The aim of this paper is to evaluate how employers who illegally under-report their employees’ salaries to evade paying the full tax and social contributions owed can be explained and tackled. These employers have been conventionally explained as rational economic actors doing so when the benefits outweigh the costs, and thus the solution is to increase the sanctions and/or probability of detection. An alternative social actor approach, however, explains employers as under-reporting salaries because of their lack of both vertical trust (i.e., their beliefs are not in symmetry with the laws and regulations) and horizontal trust (i.e., they believe many others are non-compliant). Reporting a 2015 survey of 450 employers in FYR Macedonia, the finding is that there is no strong association between employers under-reporting salaries and their perceived level of penalties and risks of detection, but a strong significant association with both their level of vertical and horizontal trust. The theoretical and policy implications are then discussed.
Background: A lower tax morality leads to an increased readiness to become active in the unofficial economy and causes the lack of public revenues.
Objectives: The aim of this paper is to investigate determinants that shape tax morale of Croatian citizens.
Methods/Approach: An ordered logit model is employed to evaluate which determinants shape tax morale of Croatian citizens. Data for the research were collected from 2,000 face-to-face interviews conducted in Croatia in late 2015.
Results: The descriptive analysis illustrates that 52 percent of respondents reported a high level of tax morale, 26 percent of respondents have a low tax morale, while 8 and 14 percent have a mid-low and a mid-high tax morale, respectively. The ordered logit analysis revealed that gender, age, financial situation, region, and participation in the unofficial economy have an impact on the tax morale.
Conclusions: Besides socio-demographic, socio-economic, and spatial determinants, a great number of sanctions for participation in informal activities also shapes tax morale of the Croatian citizens. More precisely, marginal effects show that those perceiving the expected sanctions as “normal tax or social security contributions due, plus a fine or a prison sentence” have by 6.3 percentage points higher probability of reporting the highest tax morale than others.