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Tax on Stock Buybacks a Misguided Way to Encourage Investment

Stock buybacks have gained a bad rap in recent years as policymakers have blamed them for a range of economic ills, from encouraging a focus on short-term profits to reduced investment. Now, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) have targeted buybacks for a 2 percent excise tax in the reconciliation package. But research […]

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Tax Reform and Infrastructure Investment: The Two Theories

On August 23rd, Jared Bernstein and Ernie Tedeschi, two members of the president’s Council of Economic Advisers, released a blog post arguing that the Biden administration’s spending agenda would help keep long-term inflation in check. Their theoretical argument is sound: in the long run, productivity enhancements should put downward pressure on prices. However, the major […]

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Repealing Tariffs Would Be a Simple Option to Boost U.S. Economic Growth

Of the many tax policies modeled in our new Options for Reforming America’s Tax Code 2.0, repealing the tariffs imposed under President Trump’s administration would be one of the simplest ways policymakers could boost economic growth. Starting in 2018, the U.S. imposed tariffs on a variety of goods, including aluminum, solar panels, steel, and washers […]

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Details and Analysis of Tax Proposals in President Biden’s American Families Plan

The Biden administration’s proposed American Families Plan (AFP) would partially pay for about $1.8 trillion in new federal spending on education and family programs with about $661 billion in additional taxes on higher-income individuals and pass-through businesses like partnerships, sole proprietorships, and S corporations. The tax system would become more progressive than under current law […]

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Testimony: Tax Fairness, Economic Growth, and Funding Government Investments

Note: The following is the testimony of Scott A. Hodge, President of the Tax Foundation, prepared for the Senate Finance Committee (Subcommittee on Fiscal Responsibility and Economic Growth of the Committee on Finance) for a hearing on April 27, 2021, titled, “Creating Opportunity Through a Fairer Tax System.” Table of Contents Thank you, Madame Chairman, […]

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Raising the Corporate Rate to 28 Percent Reduces GDP by $720 Billion Over Ten Years

In our new book, Options for Reforming America’s Tax Code 2.0, we illustrate the economic, distributional, and revenue trade-offs of 70 tax changes, including President Biden’s proposal to increase the corporate tax rate to 28 percent from 21 percent today. The Options guide presents the economic effects we estimate would occur in the long term, […]

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Evaluating Proposals to Increase the Corporate Tax Rate and Levy a Minimum Tax on Corporate Book Income

Table of Contents Key Findings President Joe Biden and congressional policymakers have proposed several changes to the corporate income tax, including raising the rate from 21 percent to 28 percent and imposing a 15 percent minimum tax on the book income of large corporations. The proposals are being considered to raise revenue for new spending […]

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Changes to the Tax Base Matter When Evaluating the Impact of Tax Reforms

In December, scholars David Hope and Julian Limberg released a study with the London School of Economics (LSE) examining the economic effects of reducing tax rates for high-income individuals and corporations. The paper illustrates how overlooking an important element of the tax system—the structure of the tax base—can lead to an incomplete understanding of how […]

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Three New Year’s Resolutions for Tax Policymakers

The world is ready to close the book on 2020 and start fresh in 2021, awaiting widespread vaccination, an end to the pandemic, and the beginning of a new chapter of economic recovery. With a fresh start in mind, and a healthy dose of optimism, here are three New Year’s resolutions for crafting better tax […]

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Walter Williams, RIP

Walter Williams, who taught millions of people economics throughout his long career, has died. He was the author of over 150 publications and a syndicated columnist, writing on many topics including tax, and often cited our research. He was a professor of economics at George Mason University, and I attended his microeconomics class nearly 20 […]