Economic Policy

For nearly thirty years, the ACCF and its research affiliate, the ACCF Center for Policy Research, have brought the message to U.S. and international policymakers, the media, and the public that a nation's strength and stability depend upon well-thought-out economic, regulatory, and environmental policies to promote capital formation, economic growth, and a higher standard of living for all.

Research Publications & Testimony

  • Special Report: Trade Promotion Authority – American Economy & Trade

    The President’s 2014 Trade Policy Agenda stresses the critical role of trade and investment in the Administration’s strategy to create jobs, promote growth and strengthen the middle class. However, Congress has failed to grant Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) to the Executive Branch since the last one expired on July 1, 2007. This special report discusses […]

  • Special Report: A Higher Tax Rate on Dividends: Would it Impact U.S. Economic Recovery and Capital Formation?

    The ACCF CPR presents this Special Report to help policymakers, the public and the media understand the short and long run consequences of raising tax rates on dividends.

  • The Impact of Raising Tax Rates on Individual Capital Gains

    Background

    Even though the recession has been officially over since 2009, the U.S. economy continues to struggle with high unemployment and sluggish economic growth. Decision makers face major uncertainties, including the scheduled expiration of decade old tax reductions for families and individuals at all income levels, the so-called “Bush Tax Cuts.” One component of the expiring tax cuts is the individual capital gains tax rate. Without any action, the top individual capital gains tax rate will increase to 20% from the current top rate of 15%. As a result of the recently passed 2010 health care legislation, there will be an additional 3.8% tax on unearned income beginning in 2013. Coupled with the 2013 scheduled restoration of the “Pease Limitation” on itemized deductions (which will impose roughly a 1.2% marginal rate on capital gains), individuals will face a top federal rate on capital gains of 25%. This sharp 67% increase on investment income will no doubt have negative consequences on an already struggling U.S. economy. This testimony presents evidence on the impact of capital gains taxes on entrepreneurial activity, discusses how the U.S. tax rate compares to our trading partners and how letting the tax rate rise will impact the overall U.S. economy and job growth.

  • Tax Reform, U.S. Investment and Job Growth: Does Cash Flow Matter?

    Dr. Margo Thorning submits testimony for the hearing on “Manufacturing and Tax Reform” by the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means

Recent Articles

  • A Bipartisan Breakthrough on Trade

    Washington, D.C., witnessed a rare but welcome event this week when Republican leaders decided to back President Obama’s request for “fast track” trade authority. This would establish negotiating guidelines for the president and guarantee him an up-or-down vote in Congress on any trade deal he signed. This in no way means that the fight is […]

  • We need trade promotion authority more than ever

    Trade promotion authority is showing signs of life as Republican congressional leaders and senior White House officials try to forge ahead on the one critical area on which they share common ground.  The usual battle lines have been drawn.  Top business groups are urging passage to grant authority for negotiating trade deals.  Union leaders have […]

  • Op-Ed: Trade Policy Is Low-Hanging Fruit for a Bipartisan Win

    To remain viable in the eyes of a very dissatisfied electorate, Congress and Obama must chalk up a bipartisan win. As a low-hanging fruit that has enjoyed across the aisle support in the past, TPA may be just the ticket to an economic victory domestically and globally.

  • WSJ Think Tank: Could Tax Extenders Debacle Kick-Start Tax Reform?

    By Mark Bloomfield Congress is poised to punt yet again. The House has passed a bill to extend the 55 tax provisions that expired in 2013, ending uncertainty for the IRS and for taxpayers, but only for the 2014 tax year. The Senate and the president are likely to go along. Rather than lament lawmakers’ inability to do […]

Energy and Climate Change Policy

ACCF is an internationally recognized economic authority on energy and environmental policy issues. Because energy use and economic growth go hand in hand, policymakers should develop a flexible, long-term approach to reducing the growth of greenhouse gases (GHGs). This will require a global effort based on technological innovation and technology transfer to developing countries where GHG emissions growth is most rapid. In addition, U.S. tax policies should be reformed to reduce the cost of capital for new energy efficient and pollution control technologies.

Research Publications & Testimony

Recent Articles

Tax Policy

For three decades, the American Council for Capital Formation has been a leading and effective advocate of sound economic policies to promote sustained economic growth, job creation, and international competitiveness. With its bipartisan approach, the breadth and diversity of its support in the business community, and long experience working with policymakers and the media, the ACCF has been instrumental in focusing attention on the need for economic policies to enhance capital formation.

Research Publications & Testimony

Recent Articles

  • Overhaul the Tax System Like It’s 1913, Not 1986

    Two weeks from Tax Day, taxpayer frustration is high. As lawmakers seek a path to tax reform, the lessons of the Revenue Act of 1913 and the Tax Reform Act of 1986 might be helpful to recall. In 1913, the major source of revenue for the government was a complex, lobbyist-driven set of tariffs, which had become politically unpopular and economically unsound. […]

  • Enough Common Ground for Corporate Tax Reform in 2015

    By Mark Bloomfield House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, and President Barack Obama all say that corporate tax reform is doable in 2015. But to be realistic, it has to be done in the next five or six months–before the 2016 elections make it too difficult. That is why “Getting to […]

  • John Whitehead, a remarkable man

    The Hill is the magazine of and about Congress, but perhaps the story of a man who made his mark outside of Washington could provide an instructive perspective for those who serve inside Washington. Integrity, generosity and passion defined John Whitehead. He was an investment banker, public servant and philanthropist, who recently passed away at […]

  • On Capital Gains, Obama is no Ronald Reagan

    President Obama can draw a line in the sand on capital gains rates, or he could take one step over it and be in the good company of his predecessors, like Reagan, JFK and FDR who realized their importance to the economy and found common ground.

Capital Gains Tax Policy

In 1978, ACCF was instrumental in helping turn a looming hike on the capital gains tax into a dramatic tax cut. Today, thirty years later, ACCF continues to provide expert research and a bipartisan effort to maintain low rates on capital gains taxes.

Research Publications & Testimony

  • Update: State and Federal Individual Capital Gains Tax Rates – How High Could They Go?

    As the debate on federal tax reform continues, the ACCF Center for Policy Research (CPR) presents this Special Report to further the debate and highlight the effect of increased federal tax rates on long-term individual capital gains tax rates when both the federal, state and, in some cases, local tax rates are combined. Long-term individual […]

  • The Impact of Raising Tax Rates on Individual Capital Gains

    Background

    Even though the recession has been officially over since 2009, the U.S. economy continues to struggle with high unemployment and sluggish economic growth. Decision makers face major uncertainties, including the scheduled expiration of decade old tax reductions for families and individuals at all income levels, the so-called “Bush Tax Cuts.” One component of the expiring tax cuts is the individual capital gains tax rate. Without any action, the top individual capital gains tax rate will increase to 20% from the current top rate of 15%. As a result of the recently passed 2010 health care legislation, there will be an additional 3.8% tax on unearned income beginning in 2013. Coupled with the 2013 scheduled restoration of the “Pease Limitation” on itemized deductions (which will impose roughly a 1.2% marginal rate on capital gains), individuals will face a top federal rate on capital gains of 25%. This sharp 67% increase on investment income will no doubt have negative consequences on an already struggling U.S. economy. This testimony presents evidence on the impact of capital gains taxes on entrepreneurial activity, discusses how the U.S. tax rate compares to our trading partners and how letting the tax rate rise will impact the overall U.S. economy and job growth.

  • The Fiscal Cliff: Impact on U.S. Economy and Employment if Bush Tax Cuts Expire

    As the debate about how to revive strong U.S. economic and job growth continues, policymakers must confront a host of budget and tax policy decisions. One of the key issues policymakers must decide is the fate of the reductions in tax rates on income, capital gains and dividends which were enacted during the 2001-2005 period and then extended for the 2011-2012 period. The ACCF presents this summary of a new macroeconomic analysis by Dr. Allen Sinai, Chief Global Economist and President of Decision Economics, Inc to help policymakers, the public and the media understand the consequences of raising tax rates in the current economic environment.

  • The Buffett Rule: 5 Things You Need to Know

    The Senate recently rejected “The Buffett Rule.”  However, Senate leaders and President Obama pledge to continue to make it a defining political issue this election season.  Economic research has long shown that tax hikes on savings and investment can have adverse impacts on entrepreneurship, job and economic growth and U.S. competitiveness.  Here are 5 important […]

Recent Articles

  • On Capital Gains, Obama is no Ronald Reagan

    President Obama can draw a line in the sand on capital gains rates, or he could take one step over it and be in the good company of his predecessors, like Reagan, JFK and FDR who realized their importance to the economy and found common ground.

  • WSJ Think Tank: Could Tax Extenders Debacle Kick-Start Tax Reform?

    By Mark Bloomfield Congress is poised to punt yet again. The House has passed a bill to extend the 55 tax provisions that expired in 2013, ending uncertainty for the IRS and for taxpayers, but only for the 2014 tax year. The Senate and the president are likely to go along. Rather than lament lawmakers’ inability to do […]

  • Tax Reform by 2016? Maybe

    Mark Bloomfield, president and chief executive of the American Council for Capital Formation, a man steeped in the history of tax battles, says we are unlikely to see stand-alone business tax reform, simply because it never has happened before. Politicians aren’t inclined to cut taxes for corporations without providing commensurate relief for the little guys, he observes.

  • Piketty on the 2014 ballot?

    Election 2014 is upon us; all eyes are on targeted races around the country and the balance of power in Washington. One young French economist may shape outcomes on Nov. 4 and beyond more than any other candidate: Thomas Piketty. Since earlier this year, Piketty has made tremendous waves as a critic of free markets […]