Reducing the Deficit by Increasing Individual Income Tax Rates

Research Report

Reducing the Deficit by Increasing Individual Income Tax Rates

Abstract

This paper analyzes three options to increase individual income tax rates to reduce the projected debt-to-GDP to 60% by 2020, 2025 or 2035. Option 1 increases all individual income tax rates, Option 2 increases only the top three rates, and Option 3 only the top two rates. Options are analyzed using a Current Law baseline (2001-2003 tax cuts expire) and Current Policy baseline (2001-2003 tax cuts are extended). Under Current Policy, Options 2 and 3 would not meet all targets, even with rates near 100%. Under Current Law, required top rates would range from 44% (Option 1) to 58% (Option 3).

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