The long-run investment effect of taxation in OECD countries

Publication date: 24 Feb 2021 | Publication type: NIESR Discussion Paper | NIESR Author(s): Venturini, F | External Author(s): Madsen, J. B.; Minniti, A | JEL Classification: E10, E62, O38, O40 | NIESR Discussion Paper Number: 527


The gradually changing nature of production and the move away from tangible investment towards intangible investment over the past century suggests that the effects of the tax structure on investment need to be reassessed. To address this issue, we establish an endogenous growth model in which investment in tangible assets, R&D and education are influenced by different types of taxes. We test the long-run implications of the model using annual data for 21 OECD countries over the period 1890-2015. We find that corporate taxes reduce investment in tangible assets and R&D. However, while personal income taxes reduce investment in tertiary education, they enhance the investment in R&D. Thus, a revenue-neutral switch from corporate to personal income taxes is growth enhancing.

Keyword tags: 
Tangible and Intangible Capital
economic growth