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In this paper, a lobby group or union may influence public policy because it is able, via a costly signal such as a boycott or a strike, to negatively impact the image of decision makers. The competence of a government is measured by its ability to do a lot with only a little money. Voters receive, through observing the level of public output, only a noisy signal of government's quality so that the lobby groups, which are better informed, may transmit to them more precise information about it.
Controlling for country fixed effects, there is a positive and statistically significant relationship between the degree of housing market regulation (HMR) and the strictness of employment protection legislation (EPL) in OECD countries. We provide a model in which HMR increases foreclosure costs in case of mortgage default, while EPL raises the administrative cost of dismissal. Owing to banks' lending behavior, individuals' demand for job protection increases with the cost of foreclosure. We use the model to discuss social housing and family insurance, the case for mortgage unemployment insurance, the impact of min down-payment policies, regulations on the use of fixed-term contracts, the failure of a 2006 French reform of labor contracts, and feed-back effects from HMR to EPL.
Although there is mounting empirical evidence that the mere presence of borders contribute to reduce trade significantly, there is no firm view on what are the reasons underlying this phenomenon. This paper investigates the role played by asymmetries in judicial systems in driving the "border effect". First, we provide evidence that differences in the judicial system matter for the volume of trade flows. Variables capturing the extent of asymmetries in the procedures to settle trade litigations perform significantly in estimation both across OECD countries and across French regions. Second, we develop a matching model of trade showing that such asymetries in the legal system fragment trade through a mechanism which is essentially different compared with that of transport costs or formal trade barriers.
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We re-examine the efficiency of observable and unobservable crime protection decisions with new results and insights. Observable protection is unambiguously associated with a negative externality. At the individual level, it reduces the crime effort, but its unit payoff remains unchanged. Conversely, unobservable protection reduces the unit payoff and has no effect on the crime effort exerted, though it deters crime globally. A decrease in the global crime payoff is detrimental to a victim if protection is observable, while it is beneficial when unobservable. While observable protection has a positive diversion effect, it has the opposite effect when unobservable.
In this paper, we analyze the trade war between two large countries when the trade policy is decided through majority voting. We show how the distributive aspect of trade policy interacts with the strategic aspect. It is shown that the voting equilibrium depends on the distribution of the factor endowment. If median voters in each country own relatively more (less) than the aggregate economy of the factor used intensively in the production of the imported good, the tariffs outcome of the trade war at home (abroad) is larger (lower) than the Johnson-Mayer one. This is to say that the strategic effects from trade policy can be isolated from the distributive aspect. Moreover, an increase of the median of the scarce/abundant factor distribution in one country leads to a larger tariff in this country and a lower tariff in the other. This implies that the political situation in one country affects the outcome of the trade war for both.
This paper tackles the issue of international fiscal coordination in a world of integrated markets sovereign national governments. Taxation of mobile capital and immobile labor in order to finance a public good generates inefficient fiscal competition. Two fiscal reforms are considered: a minimum capital tax level and a tax range, i.e., a minimum plus a maximum capital tax level. We show that the introduction of a lower bound to the capital tax level is never preferred to fiscal competition by all countries while there always exists a combination of both a lower and an upper bound which is unanimously accepted.
This paper presents a fiscal competition model in which policy decisions are not only corporate taxes but also whether or not to control the multinational firms'(MNF) profit shifting activities. MNFs manipulate transfer prices as a means to shift profits from high to low tax countries. National governments may hinder such a behavior by monitoring the MNF's accounts. We show that a country may optimally decide not to monitor the MNF for two different reasons. On the one hand, that makes it anattractive location for the MFN even if the corporate tax is high. On the other hand, not monitoring increases the mobility of the MFN's profits. This shifts the focus of tax competition in that corporate taxation then influences not only the MNF's location as the place where it declares its profits.
Because the patent system is nowadays under criticisms, it is legitimate to question whether patents provide the best incentive mechanism for innovation. Wouldn?t it be preferable to base incentives on a reward system? This is the question addressed in this article, first in a general perspective and then, by considering the specific case of the pharmaceutical industry. JEL code ? L51, L65, L88, 034.
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