Taxes, Transfers, and Gender: Fiscal Policy Incidence across Fiscal and Care Categories in Jordan

Fiscal incidence analysis helps in understanding who contributes to and benefits from the fiscal system, and assessing the impact of fiscal policies in reducing poverty and inequality. Traditionally, the incidence of fiscal policy is assessed for households along the income distribution. In an attempt to tease out the gendered impacts of the fiscal system, this paper instead looks at how much different types of households in Jordan contribute to and benefit from current fiscal policies and the extent to which the fiscal system is helping to equalize post-market outcomes within and across groups. A household typology is constructed for Jordan based on households’ demographic characteristics, which not only determine which taxes and transfers a household experiences, but also influence the participation of women in economic activity outside the household because they affect the generation and allocation of care responsibilities. The paper shows that the receipt of in-kind benefits, primarily education, is what drives which groups that receive the largest net benefits from the fiscal system. The results also show that the fiscal system in Jordan is reducing within-group inequalities, which represent over 80 percent of total inequality for both fiscal and care groups. The fiscal system has a limited impact on inequalities across groups, but they are very small.