Conflicting Transfer Pricing Incentives and the Role of Coordination
49 Pages Posted: 17 May 2010 Last revised: 20 Sep 2016
Date Written: September 1, 2016
Our study evaluates the role of coordination, at both the government- and the firm-level, on the transfer prices set by U.S. multinational corporations (MNCs) when income taxes and duties cannot be jointly minimized with a single transfer price. We find that either the presence of a coordinated income tax and customs enforcement regime or coordination between the income tax and customs functions alters transfer prices for these firms. Our analyses have implications for both firms and taxing authorities. Specifically, our findings suggest that MNCs might decrease their aggregate tax burdens by increasing coordination within the firm, or that governments might increase their aggregate revenues by improving coordinating enforcement across taxing authorities. Our study is novel in that we document, in a specific setting, how coordination influences MNCs’ tax reporting behavior.
Keywords: transfer pricing, income shifting, customs duties, coordination
JEL Classification: H25, M40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation