Doctoral thesis

Three essays on fiscal federalism and market structure


100 p

Thèse de doctorat: Università della Svizzera italiana, 2015

English This thesis assesses two different sub-fields inside public economics in general and taxation in particular: tax incidence and tax competition. The first chapter analyzes the incidence of taxes in the Canadian retail gasoline market by devising a novel empirical test, based on observables, to assess whether taxes are under- or overshifted in an oligopolistic market. The results show that taxes in the Canadian retail gasoline market are undershifted. The second one focuses on the tax competition among Swiss cantons by empirically assessing the impact of introducing a corporate flat tax scheme on corporate location decisions. The main finding shows that switching from a graduated rate tax (GRT) scheme on profits to a flat rate tax (FRT) system has a negative (rather small) impact on the stock of firms in Swiss municipalities (and cantons). The effect is considerably larger for smaller firms. Finally, the third chapter links the two first chapters of this thesis by setting a comprehensive model that merges tax incidence and tax competition frameworks that, to the best of my knowledge, have only been studied separately.
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