You’ve got mail: A randomised field experiment on tax evasion

14 July 2017 18:26

You’ve got mail: A randomised field experiment on tax evasion

The new working paper by The Choice Lab researchers Kristina M. Bott, Alexander W. Cappelen, Erik Ø. Sørensen and Bertil Tungodden is now available.

The paper is published as Discussion Paper 10/2017, in the Department of Economics/NHH Norwegian School of Economics paper series. Please find the full paper by clicking on the link below. 

Full working paper (1.5MB PDF)

Abstract:
We report from a large-scale randomized field experiment conducted on a unique sample of more than 15 000 taxpayers in Norway, who were likely to have misreported their foreign income. We find that the inclusion of a moral appeal or a sentence that increases the perceived probability of detection in a letter from the tax authorities almost doubled the average self-reported foreign income. The moral letter mainly works on the intensive margin, while the detection letter mainly works on the extensive margin. We also show that the detection letter has large long-term effects on tax compliance.

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