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Center for Economics and the Environment: Policy Series


If one believes popular rankings of “tax climate” across the states, Missouri fares pretty well. Using generic types of business tax rankings, however, can mask underlying issues that may belie their message. This study uses the Tax Foundation’s 2015 report “Location Matters: The State Tax Costs of Doing Business” to compare total tax rates paid by different types of businesses in Missouri to those paid by similar businesses in other states. Looking at the total taxes paid—not only corporate income taxes, but also property taxes, unemployment taxes, etc.—is crucial to understanding the total or effective burden of state taxes on businesses. It is this broader picture of tax burdens that allows us to, for example, better understand decisions by firms to locate, or not, in Missouri.

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R.W. Hafer is professor of economics and director of the Center for Economics and the Environment at Lindenwood University.

Howard Wall is professor of economics; director of the Hammond Institute for Free Enterprise; and senior research fellow in the Center for Economics and the Environment at Lindenwood University.

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.