The U.S. is one of the least taxed of the developed countries
- April 14, 2014
The U.S. was the third least taxed country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 2011, the most recent year for which OECD has complete data. Of all the OECD countries, which are essentially the countries the U.S. trades with and competes with, only Chile and Mexico collect less taxes as a percentage of their overall economy (as a percentage of gross domestic product, or GDP).
This sharply contradicts the widely held view among many members of Congress that taxes are already high enough in the U.S. and that any efforts to reduce the federal deficit should therefore take the form of cuts in government spending.
As the graph to the right illustrates, in 2011, the total (federal, state and local) tax revenue collected in the U.S. was equal to 24 percent of the U.S.’s GDP.
The total taxes collected by other OECD countries that year was equal to 34 percent of combined GDP of those countries.