Tag: ‘CBO’

TPC Takes a New Look at Incomes

By :: July 25th, 2013

The Tax Policy Center has changed the way it calculates income. The new definition, which TPC calls “expanded cash income” or ECI, will raise measured income for most taxpayers. ECI includes sources of income TPC previously excluded such as employer contributions to retirement plans and health insurance, income earned by retirement accounts, and food stamp […]

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Are Low Interest Rates Masking Future Deficits?

By :: July 9th, 2013

Thanks to artificially low interest rates, the United States has been able to finance deficits exceeding $1 trillion every year from 2009 through 2012 at very low cost. Throughout the period, the ratio of interest to the GDP has remained almost stable and is not expected to start rising until 2015. Some argue that this […]

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Who Benefits from Tax Preferences? You Do.

By :: May 30th, 2013

The Congressional Budget Office report on the distribution of tax expenditures is getting lots of buzz, nearly all of it positive. This is a gratifying and somewhat surprising outcome. The paper confirms many of the findings of my Tax Policy Center colleagues who have done similar analyses in recent years. The basic story is pretty […]

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Immigration, Dynamic Scoring, and CBO

By :: May 3rd, 2013

Immigration policy poses an unusual challenge for the Congressional Budget Office and the Joint Committee on Taxation. If Congress allows more people into the United States, our population, labor force, and economy will all get bigger. But CBO and JCT usually hold employment, gross domestic product (GDP), and other macroeconomic variables constant when making their […]

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Changing Government's Inflation Measure Would Raise Taxes as Much as it Would Cut Spending

By :: March 5th, 2013

Changing the way government adjusts spending and taxes for inflation is one of those issues that continues to hang around the edges of the budget debate. Republicans and many economists argue for shifting to a more accurate inflation measure, called the chained Consumer Price Index (CPI). President Obama would support a version as part of a […]

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Bowles-Simpson II: A New Plan to Avoid the Sequester

By :: February 19th, 2013

With 10 days to go until the dreaded sequester—the automatic across-the-board spending cuts that most lawmakers profess to hate—the Washington drama machine is starting to get in gear. Today, President Obama stood in front a group of uniformed first responders and warned darkly of layoffs if the spending cuts kick in. At the same time, […]

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Can the Income Tax Fund the Government We Want?

By :: February 5th, 2013

Can the income tax fund the government we seem to want? Probably not. Will lawmakers create a revenue system that will? Not anytime soon. That was the consensus of four tax policy experts at an Urban Institute panel I moderated this afternoon. The panelists–historian Joe Thorndike, Urban Institute economist and tax reform veteran Gene Steuerle, […]

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How to Cut the Charitable Deduction Without Reducing Giving

By :: December 5th, 2012

If income tax deductions are capped or limited—an idea that often comes up in the debate over both the fiscal cliff and long-run tax reform—the biggest losers could well be charities. At a time when the government role in providing a safety net may shrink, many of these groups may become increasingly important.  Yet deduction […]

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Gloom or Doom from CBO

By :: August 23rd, 2012

The Congressional Budget Office’s summer budget update charts two undesirable paths for the nation’s economic and fiscal health next year. Call them Gloom and Doom. Gloom is what happens if the tax increases and government spending cuts scheduled to arrive in January actually occur. CBO says that would drive the economy back into recession in […]

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Will the 2010 Health Law Cut the Deficit or Add to It?

By :: April 10th, 2012

In a new study, Chuck Blahous, who is a public trustee for Medicare and Social Security, concludes that the 2010 health law will add at least $340 billion to the federal deficit from 2012-2021. This is contrary to the official estimates by the Congressional Budget Office, which initially figured the Affordable Care Act would reduce the […]

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