OECD reports: Taxation of Household Savings and the Role and Design of Net Wealth Taxes

Released 12 April 2018

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has published reports examining the taxation of household savings and role and design of net wealth taxes.

Taxation of Household Savings provides a detailed review of the way savings are taxed in the 35 OECD countries and five key partner countries (Argentina, Bulgaria, Colombia, Lithuania and South Africa). It finds large differences within countries in the tax treatment of a range of assets, such as bank accounts, bonds, shares, private pensions and housing, and points out that tax rules, rather than pre-tax rates of return, are likely driving some savings decisions.

The Role and Design of Net Wealth Taxes examines the use of net wealth taxes, both currently and historically, across the OECD. It assesses the case for and against the use of net wealth taxes to raise revenue and reduce inequality but does not call for their introduction. The report suggests that there is little need for net wealth taxes in countries with broad-based personal capital income taxes, including capital gains taxes, and well-designed inheritance and gift taxes. It finds there may be scope for such taxes in countries where the taxation of capital income is low or where inheritance taxes are not levied.

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