113th Annual Conference Saturday Short Course

The Saturday Short Course sponsored by the University of Michigan Office of Tax Policy Research entitled Taxation of the Superrich, will be led by Florian Scheuer, UBS Professor of Economics of Institutions, University of Zurich. It will run from 11:00 to 12:30 pm, on Saturday, November 21.

This short course will summarize recent developments in the optimal taxation of top earners and wealth holders. In view of the recent increase in inequality, led by a concentration among the very richest swath of households, politicians in many countries have called for increasing the tax burden at the top, in the form of both higher top rates for existing income taxes as well as new tax levies targeting the superrich. In this short course, we will discuss new research that aims at illuminating whether such proposals constitute good policy. Two specific focuses will be (1) the degree to which the incomes of the superrich are qualitatively different from others, due to superstar effects, spillovers or the role of capital gains, and (2) the taxation of the savings of the superrich, which has received renewed attention with recent proposals to introduce an annual wealth tax in the US.

For a short review paper providing some useful background for the course, see: Scheuer, F. and Slemrod, J. (2020), “Taxation and the Superrich,” Annual Review of Economics, Vol. 12, p. 189-211.