International Tax and Public Finance

, Volume 22, Issue 5, pp 834–860 | Cite as

Empirical evidence on horizontal competition in tax enforcement

  • José María Durán-Cabré
  • Alejandro Esteller-Moré
  • Luca Salvadori


Tax auditing parameters have been largely overlooked by the literature as policy-making instruments of any relevance; however, enforcement strategies are critical elements of the tax burden. In this paper, we show that, in a federal framework, tax auditing policies can serve as additional tools for regional interaction. We examine the presence of this interaction by adopting a spatial econometric approach. We employ a spatial panel autoregressive model and obtain results that are congruent with standard theory, corroborating the presence of horizontal competition between regions in their tax auditing policies. We also find that once regional governments acquire legal power, the opaque competition in enforcement policies appears to switch in part to a more transparent competition in statutory tax parameters.


Tax administration and auditing Fiscal competition  Fiscal federalism 

JEL Classification

H71 H77 H83 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • José María Durán-Cabré
    • 1
  • Alejandro Esteller-Moré
    • 1
  • Luca Salvadori
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut d’Economia de Barcelona (IEB)Universitat de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Departament d’Economia Pública, Economia Política i Economia Espanyola, Facultat d’Economia i EmpresaUniversitat de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

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