An Application of Distribution-Neutral Fiscal Policy


Sanjeev Gupta ; Sugata Marjit ; Sandip Sarkar

Publication Date:

January 24, 2018

Electronic Access:

Free Download. Use the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view this PDF file

Disclaimer: IMF Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to encourage debate. The views expressed in IMF Working Papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF, its Executive Board, or IMF management.


Distribution neutral fiscal policy refers to a structure of taxes and transfers that keep the income distribution unchanged even after positive or negative shocks to an economy. This is referred to as a Strong Pareto Superior (SPS) allocation which improves the standard Pareto criterion by keeping the degree of inequality, but not the absolute level of income intact. We apply this methodology to India to compute SPS tax rates and determine their proximity to actual tax rates. Limited available data on income and expenditure shows that the official policies so far are close to desired benchmark level. Our methodological contribution will be enriched further with more detailed income tax and transfer data.


Working Paper No. 2018/012



Publication Date:

January 24, 2018



Stock No:




Please address any questions about this title to