Wisconsin tax tidbit: Roth conversions
Coffee card tax bribe doesn't work

U.S. taxes per person

If you're still working on your 2009 tax return, chances are you owe the IRS.

That probably also means you're griping about just how much of your money goes each year to Uncle Sam.

I don't begrudge your grumbling. I've done my share of tax-related grousing over the years and am likely to do more later this weekend.

It's never fun to owe anyone. And having to write a big a check to the tax collector in April really ruins an otherwise lovely spring. (Of course, you probably could avoid that by adjusting your withholding or making estimated tax payments, but those are topics for later nagging postings.)

Greg Mankiw, an economics professor at Harvard University, recently took a look at just where on the global tax payment scale we Americans rank.

"The most common metric for answering this question is taxes as a percentage of GDP [gross domestic product]," writes Mankiw at his eponymous blog where he makes, as he describes it, Random Observations for Students of Economics. "However, high tax rates tend to depress GDP."

For some purposes, continues Mankiw, a better statistic may be taxes per person. And he computed that amount using Taxes/GDP x GDP/Person = Taxes/Person. The results:

France = $15,556 per person
Germany = $13,893 per person
United Kingdom = $13,714 per person  
United States $13,097 per person
Canada = $12,789 per person 
Italy = $12,478 per person 
Spain = $11,014 per person 
Japan = $8,992 per person

Or, as Mankiw noted, the United States is a low-tax country when based on taxes as a percentage of GDP, but as judged by taxes per person, the United States is in the middle of the pack.

Aren't taxes grand? Something for everyone to love ... or hate!

Related posts:

Want to tell your friends about this blog post? Click the Tweet This or Digg This links below or use the Share This icon to spread the word via e-mail, Facebook and other popular applications. Thanks!


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.