Raising Revenue by Limiting Tax Expenditures

20 Pages Posted: 17 Nov 2014

See all articles by Martin S. Feldstein

Martin S. Feldstein

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) (deceased); Harvard University (deceased)

Date Written: November 2014

Abstract

Limiting tax expenditures can raise revenue without increasing marginal tax rates. Such a policy is equivalent to reducing government spending now done as subsidies through the tax code for a wide range of household spending and income. This paper explores one way of limiting tax expenditures: a cap on the total reduction in tax liabilities that each individual can achieve by the use of deductions and exclusions. The analysis describes the revenue effects and the distributional consequences of such a cap, and examines the sensitivity of these results to various design features.

Suggested Citation

Feldstein, Martin S., Raising Revenue by Limiting Tax Expenditures (November 2014). NBER Working Paper No. w20672, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2526007

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