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Project Citation: 

Mortenson, Jacob, and Whitten, Andrew. Code for: “Bunching to Maximize Tax Credits: Evidence from Kinks in the U.S. Tax Schedule.” Nashville, TN: American Economic Association [publisher], 2020. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2020-07-23.

Project Description

Summary:  View help for Summary We explore bunching at U.S. income tax kinks using a panel of 258 million tax returns from 1996 to 2014. We find bunching at seven kinks, with nearly all bunching occurring at kinks maximizing tax credits. In our sample period, the total number of bunchers increased at an 10.9 percent annualized growth rate, from 134,300 in 1996 to 866,600 in 2014. Approximately two-thirds of these bunchers locate at the unique point that maximizes refunds. Some taxpayers repeatedly bunch at this point, even in consecutive years when different tax kinks are refund-maximizing.

Scope of Project

Subject Terms:  View help for Subject Terms Bunching; tax credits; income tax
JEL Classification:  View help for JEL Classification
      H23 Externalities • Redistributive Effects • Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
      H24 Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
      H26 Tax Evasion and Avoidance
      H31 Household
      J22 Time Allocation and Labor Supply
Geographic Coverage:  View help for Geographic Coverage United States
Time Period(s):  View help for Time Period(s) 1996 – 2014
Data Type(s):  View help for Data Type(s) program source code


Data Source:  View help for Data Source IRS tax filings
Collection Mode(s):  View help for Collection Mode(s) other
Unit(s) of Observation:  View help for Unit(s) of Observation Tax unit, year pair.

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