Tax avoidance with cross-border hybrid instruments

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningfagfællebedømt

The rules demarcating debt and equity for tax purposes differ between countries, hence the possibility that a hybrid financial instrument is treated as equity in one country and debt in another. This may create a scope for tax avoidance by allowing firms that invest in foreign countries to combine tax deductible interest expenses in the host country and tax favored dividend income in the home country. In this paper, we first develop a formal model of hybrid instruments and show that, for a given pair of countries, firms in at least one country and sometimes in both can avoid taxes on investment in the other country with a cross-border hybrid instrument. We then investigate why countries tend to allow the use of hybrid instruments for tax avoidance and show that even if effective anti-avoidance rules are available, there exists a global policy equilibrium in which no country uses such rules
TidsskriftJournal of Public Economics
Sider (fra-til)40-52
StatusUdgivet - 2014

ID: 101558400