SFB 303 Discussion Paper No. A - 109
Author: Ebert, Udo
Title: Global Tax Progressivity
Abstract: The paper is concerned with the question how to choose an appropriate summary measure of tax
progressivity. Knowing the relevant properties of a global index is important since the answer one gets is in
general dependent on the choice of an index. Some properties of summary measures are proposed and their
consequences are investigated. The starting point of the analysis is a local measure, namely the residual income
progression. For a given distribution of before-tax income the global indices which are suggested assess the
average progressivity, i.e. the average degree of progression. The characterization of two families of
progressivity indices are presented. Furthermore one index, the geometric mean of the local measures of
progressivity, is proposed and characterized. It possesses attractive properties. Finally distributional
considerations (i.e. distributional weights) are taken into account.
Creation-Date: March 1987
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