Conference Agenda

Overview and details of the sessions of this online conference.

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Session Overview
K07: Business Taxes
Friday, 20/Aug/2021:
12:30pm - 2:00pm

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12:30pm - 12:52pm

Quantifying the OECD BEPS Indicators – An Update to BEPS Action 11

Daniel Klein2, Christopher Alexander Ludwig1,2, Katharina Nicolay1,2, Christoph Spengel2,1

1ZEW Mannheim; 2University of Mannheim

In 2015 the OECD introduced six indicators to quantify and evaluate base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) activity over time. In this study, we revisit three selected indicators and point out potential pitfalls when interpreting the indicator results. First, we transparently replicate Indicator 1, which intends to assess the disconnect between financial and real economic activities, and show a moderately decreasing trend of the indicator estimates. Second, replicating Indicator 4, we find that multinational firms have, on average, lower effective tax rates than domestic firms. We confirm this result using a state-of-the-art propensity score matching approach. Third, the replication of Indicator 5, which intends to capture profit shifting through intangibles, shows a stable trend of the annual indicator estimates that extends beyond the OECD’s sample period. Overall, we conclude that the proposed indicators in the Final Report on BEPS Action 11 provide only limited information on the extent of BEPS.

Klein-Quantifying the OECD BEPS Indicators – An Update-208.pdf

12:52pm - 1:15pm

Tax Department Structure and Tax Avoidance

Henning Giese1,2, Reinald Koch1,2

1Catholic University Eichstaett-Ingolstadt, Germany; 2KU Research Institute for Taxation

Using a hand-collected data set for large European listed MNEs obtained from a major professional networking website, we investigate whether a centralized tax department leads to a more efficient tax management in terms of reducing tax liability and tax risk minimization. We report three key findings: (1) more centralized tax departments lead to an overall lower ETR but not to a lower tax risk; (2) employees working outside the home country are more frequently found in more tax complex countries; (3) the location of tax employees in tax complex countries reduces the overall tax risk. Our findings shed light on the internal working of the tax department and help explain variation in tax avoidance and tax risk behavior.

Giese-Tax Department Structure and Tax Avoidance-255.pdf

1:15pm - 1:37pm

Tax and Occupancy of Business Properties: Theory and Evidence from UK Business Rates

Ben Lockwood1,2, Martin Simmler2, Eddy Tam2

1University of Warwick, United Kingdom; 2Oxford University, United Kingdom

We study the impact of commercial property taxation on vacancy rates in the UK using regression kink and regression discontinuity designs. We exploit exogenous variations in commercial property tax rates from three different reliefs in the UK business rates system: small business rate relief (SBRR), retail relief and empty property relief. A simple theoretical framework predicts: (i) relationships between rateable values and taxes, and vacancies; (ii) that SBRR has a sorting effect on the mix of businesses in small properties. Findings consistent with the theory suggest that SBRR increases the likelihood that a property is occupied by a small business, reduces the likelihood that it is occupied by a large business, and reduces the overall likelihood of being vacant. We estimate that the retail relief reduces vacancies by 48%, and SBRR relief by up to 44%.

Lockwood-Tax and Occupancy of Business Properties-343.pdf

1:37pm - 2:00pm

Does Nexus Pay Off? Quantitative Evaluation Of IP Box Regimes In Terms Of Location Attractiveness

Jessica Martina Mueller1, Daniela Steinbrenner2

1University of Mannheim, Germany; 2Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), ZEW GmbH, Germany

In an international comparison, Germany's location attractiveness is low from the perspective of digital business models, whose core activities are the research and development of intangible assets. Our paper examines whether and in which form the introduction of an IP box into the German tax system is beneficial for the location attractiveness, especially comparing pre- and post-nexus perspectives. We describe the key features of IP box regimes and incorporate them into a forward-looking measure of the effective average tax rate, which is based on the Devereux and Griffith model. We show that introducing an IP box is a suitable instrument for reducing the effective tax burden in both the national and international case from a tax policy perspective. We find that even after the introduction of the modified nexus approach, there is considerable heterogeneity in the generosity of IP boxes based on the respective design features.

Mueller-Does Nexus Pay Off Quantitative Evaluation Of IP Box Regimes-279.pdf

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