Using an updated microsimulation model developed earlier in the Hungarian National Bank, we estimate the macroeconomic, budgetary and labour market effects of government measures relating to taxes, social contributions, social transfers and gross wages since 2010. Compared to other studies, we take into account a more broad scope of measures, e.g. measures affecting gross wages and total labour cost directly. According to our estimations, the increase of the minimum wage and the so-called expected wage have fully compensated the low-income households of 2.3 million people already in the short-run for the loss of net income stemming from personal income tax and social contribution changes (especially for the abolition of tax credit).Taking into account social transfer reforms, the long-term macroeconomic effect of the measures is favourable: the level of employment may increase by approximately 2 percent, steady-state GDP level may go up by 1.5–2 and public deficit may decrease in the long run due to the government measures.
The Hungarian tax system has undergone significant changes in recent years. The weight of labour taxes decreased by 3.3 percentage points, while the weight of consumption taxes increased by 3.7 percentage points between 2007 and 2012. This type of tax shift is not a country-specific one, but its rate is one of the largest in Europe. This study gives a brief overview of literature, followed by a presentation of the Hungarian tax structure in an international comparison, and a summary of the main changes of the tax system and relating measures, which entered into force after 2010. Then, in addition to the tax centralization indicators published by the Eurostat, an adjusted tax centralization indicator for the EU states is presented, which eliminates the tax component of public spending and transfers, takes into account the mandatory private pension contribution and compares the adjusted tax burden to the corresponding private tax base.