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By J. O. N. Perkins (auth.)

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Cuts in both direct and indirect taxation have a much smaller effect (though their relative effect rises slightly over the first five years as a whole). In the long run, public investment expenditure has by far the greatest effect on real GDP, followed by public sector employment. For this country, at any rate, the available evidence is that public expenditure has a greater effect on real GDP than either of the two types of taxation simulated, over both longer and shorter periods. Direct tax changes have, over the longer period, rather more effect than indirect tax changes for a given effect on the budget balance.

Effects on Real Output 23 Taking these two considerations together, therefore, it may be possible to find combinations of (direct) tax increases that would have less effect on real GDP than government spending in general. 2 may be consistent with those that may be drawn from simulations with the OECD's Interlink model published in 1987. 3 shows, over a five-year period changes in personal income tax had a somewhat greater effect on real GDP for a given effect on the government's financial balance over that period than did changes in government non-wage expenditures for five of the seven countries, though not for Canada, and Japan (for which the two effects were the same); but the difference was in most cases slight.

In the first place, the outlay side of the simulations relates only to government non-wage expenditures. We therefore cannot draw from these simulations conclusions about total government outlays (including government expenditure on wages and salaries). The results would thus apply to government purchases of goods, and such services as energy. In the second place, we are told that the tax changes simulated relate to a range of different types of tax increase, without being told what pattern of tax increases is used.

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