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Benjamin H. Harris

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Brief

One promising aspect of retirement saving policy in recent years is the "automatic" or opt-out features in 401(k) plans. Automatic 401(k)s enable saving even if the worker makes no effort to participate in their 401(k) plan. Prior research has shown that automatic enrollment increased...

October 30, 2008
Christopher Geissler, Benjamin H. Harris
Research report

The tax code limits the extent to which individuals may take advantage of the tax benefits associated with traditional and Roth IRAs. The only eligibility criteria for contributing to a Roth IRA are income and filing status. In contrast, eligibility for deducting contributions to a traditional...

March 7, 2008
Benjamin H. Harris, Christopher Geissler
Research report

Recent tax acts sharply lowered tax rates on long-term capital gains and dividend income. For millions of taxpayers, however, the alternative minimum tax limits the benefits from these cuts by increasing the effective marginal tax rates on capital gains and dividend income. The culprit is the...

March 3, 2008
Benjamin H. Harris, Christopher Geissler
Brief

The practice of requiring well-to-do Americans to pay a minimum tax was developed more than three decades ago. In January, 1969, then-Treasury Secretary Joseph W. Barr informed Congress that 155 individual taxpayers with income exceeding $200,000 paid no tax in 1966. The news set off a political...

September 18, 2002
Leonard E. Burman, William G. Gale, Benjamin H. Harris
Brief

Originally targeted at high-income households, the individual alternative minimum tax (AMT) is now on the verge of switching from a "class" tax to a "mass" tax. Under current law, the AMT will encroach dramatically on the middle-class over the next decade and will become the de facto tax...

September 18, 2002
Leonard E. Burman, William G. Gale, Benjamin H. Harris

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