Kyklos 37, 1984, pp. 542-576.
The paper studies the impact on international capital movements of the accelerated tax depreciation scheme introduced in the U. S. A. under the REAGAN administration. It is argued on theoretical grounds that, contrary to most other potential tax reforms, this depreciation scheme calls for a substantial restructuring in the world‐wide capital stock in favor of the U. S. Moreover, it is demonstrated that the scheme may induce severe sectoral changes within national economies. Countries that do not take countervailing actions against the U. S. policy are likely to experience a rise in their labour intensive industries at the expense of losing their capital intensive industries. A tentative estimate based on stylized economic facts indicates the necessity of a capital import into the U. S. of at least 7% of the OECD capital stock, which means that even with a doubling of the 1983 U. S. current account deficit of $40 billion more than a decade would have to pass in order for the required structural changes to be accomplished.