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Kenan Institute 2023 Grand Challenge: Workforce Disrupted
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Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues

Tax Policy

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UNC Tax Center Research Director Jeff Hoopes discusses how the tax system figures into the debt ceiling standoff and why we probably won’t see any dramatic increases in taxes anytime soon.

Recent research has documented that industry concentration has increased significantly over the past 25 years, with potentially negative consequences for competition, productivity, and social welfare. Some have suggested that greater corporate tax planning by industry leaders, which can provide them with a cost advantage over their competitors, has contributed to this trend. As a result, policymakers are targeting such tax planning to reduce industry concentration.

We quantify the immediate net effect of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) on the tax burden of corporate profits for public US corporations.

We examine the validity of the underlying assumption that the tax system favors superstar firms, using both forward-looking and backward-looking measures of firms’ tax burdens. Across multiple specifications, we find little empirical support for the idea that superstar firms are tax advantaged.

UNC Kenan-Flagler Energy Center Director Stephen Arbogast discusses the power of carbon taxes to accomplish several goals for energy producers and consumers alike.

Research by the institute-affiliated UNC Tax Center shows just six publicly traded U.S. companies, including Amazon and Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., would have paid half the estimated $32 billion in revenue generated by a 15% corporate minimum tax signed into law last month. “Who actually pays a lot is just not very many firms at all,” said Jeff Hoopes, Kenan-Flagler Business School professor and the center’s research director, who is one of the study’s authors. “My guess is it will not be the same firms every single year.”

Blouin, a member of the Kenan Institute Board of Advisors, told Knowledge at Wharton that proposals to levy a 1% excise tax on corporate share buybacks and a 15% minimum tax on corporations that report more than $1 billion in book profits or in their financial statements were ill-conceived and based on misconceptions of corporate behavior.

Join the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center and the UNC Tax Center for their annual convening, this year held virtually, on Tuesday, June 8, 2022.

Soda taxes are an increasingly popular policy tool, used to discourage purchases of sugar-sweetened beverages. This study analyzes how marketing conduct and its effectiveness might change after soda tax introductions. Prior studies on the effect of soda taxes focus on price increases but neglect other, managerially relevant marketing conduct tools, such as promotional frequency, promotional discount depth, and feature promotion frequency. This study documents how the marketing conduct and its effectiveness changed with the introduction of the tax across more than 200 retail stores in five markets.

Join the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise for a virtual talk featuring London Business School Finance Professor Alex Edmans, who will critically examine the case for purposeful business using rigorous evidence and real-life examples to show what works – and, importantly, what doesn’t.

In this interactive virtual workshop, learn how news gets made and how you can evaluate the credibility of news you find on the web. These practical skills will help you become news literate in your professional and personal lives.

We examine the role of political affiliation during the selection of Opportunity Zones, a place-based tax incentive enacted by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. We find governors are on average 7.6% more likely to select a census tract as an Opportunity Zone when the tract’s state representative is a member of the governor’s political party. This effect is incremental to local demographic factors that increased the likelihood of selection, such as lower income levels and preceding improvements in local conditions.

Centers & Initiatives