February 25, 2013
In this chapter, we propose a value-added tax (VAT) to contribute to the U.S. fiscal solution. A 5 percent broad-based VAT, paired with subsidies to offset the regressive impacts, could raise about 1 percent of GDP per year. International experience suggests that the VAT can raise substantial revenue, is administrable, and is minimally harmful to economic growth. Additionally, a properly designed VAT might help the states deal with their own fiscal issues. Although a VAT would be regressive relative to current income, this regressivity can be easily offset by transfers that would make the net burden progressive.