Are Income Taxes Destined to Rise? Fiscal Imbalance and Future Tax Policy in the United States

We present a model of optimizing government behavior in which a need for increased revenue does not lead to increased income taxes, but instead leads to the introduction of a new revenue source, such as a VAT, accompanied by a reduction in income taxes. We argue that this is a plausible outcome for the United States in view of international experience and recent fiscal reform proposals, and that the prospect of such a tax reform may have important implications for individual investment decisions.

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