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The Effect of Recent Tax Changes on Tax-Preferred Saving Behavior

Heim, Bradley T. and Lurie, Ithai Z.

Abstract:

This paper estimates the extent to which changes in tax policy induce changes in contributions to tax-preferred savings accounts using a panel of tax returns from 1999–2005 that spans the tax changes enacted in the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 and the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003. The results suggest a statistically significant, though small, response of taxpayers to changes in the after-tax price of contributing on the extensive margin, but not on the intensive margin. There is also some suggestive evidence that increases in after-tax incomes may have increased the probability of contributing to tax-preferred savings accounts and the amount contributed, though these results are not robust to alternative specifications.

Citation

Heim, Bradley T. and Lurie, Ithai Z. (2012), The Effect of Recent Tax Changes on Tax-Preferred Saving Behavior, National Tax Journal, 65:2, pp. 283-311

DOI: dx.doi.org/10.17310/ntj.2012.2.02