Économie et Statistique n° 344 Stock option taxation - Internal migrations in France - Jobs in the service sector - Large specialist stores

Economie et Statistique
Paru le : 01/10/2001
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Stock option taxation: an international view

Stéphane Guimbert et Jean-Christophe Vallat

The recent development of stock options as an element of remuneration in addition to wages is often explained by their advantageous taxation. This tax advantage is said, among other things, to slow down the executive brain drain to countries with more attractive tax systems. Nevertheless, such an idea should be qualified since the way stock options work and the specific tax systems of each country make it complicated to evaluate and make international comparisons of an actual taxation rate. Moreover, this remuneration method cannot be reduced to just the goal of tax competitiveness. It can also foster the development of young, growing companies by indexing employee remuneration more to the company's performance. An international comparison of the taxation of stock options places France in a median position. Nevertheless, French taxation seems more advantageous when considering the deviation between wage deductions and stock option taxation. The tax advantage on stock options is hence thought to offset the greater tax burden on wages. The appeal of stock options in innovation is based more on the possibility of deferring the employee's remuneration and sharing the risk between investor and employee than on any tax advantage.

Economie et Statistique
No 344
Paru le : 01/10/2001