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Peter Schwarz
''Estimating Tax-Elasticities of Foreign Direct Investment: The Importance of Tax Havens.''
( 2011, Vol. 31 No.1 )
Policy makers are increasingly concerned about the effect of taxes on foreign direct investment (FDI). This study shows that for U.S. multinationals – in line with the findings of the majority of previous studies – a reduction in host country tax rates corresponds with higher FDI-stock. The estimated elasticity suggests that a 1% reduction in host country tax rates leads to an increase of total FDI between 0.3% and 1.8%, depending on the specific tax burden indicator. In addition, it is shown that tax elasticity is lower when solely analyzing investments in production, plant and equipment (PPE). Since the latter approximates more closely the concept of real capital than total FDI stock, this indicates that inter-country competition for real capital is less intense. Finally, the tax coefficient declines and is sometimes insignificant when excluding tax havens from the empirical analysis.
Keywords: foreign direct investment, tax burden, tax havens.
JEL: H2 - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue: General
F2 - International Factor Movements and International Business: General
Manuscript Received : Aug 26 2010 Manuscript Accepted : Jan 09 2011

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