Tax Policy

            Tax Analysis

The Office of Tax Analysis (OTA) advises and assists the Assistant Secretary (Tax Policy) and his deputies in the development, analysis, and implementation of tax policies and programs. The Office provides economic and policy analyses leading to development of the Administration's tax proposals and also assesses major Congressional tax proposals.
OTA analyzes the effects of the existing tax law and alternative tax programs and prepares a variety of background papers, position papers, policy memoranda, and analytical reports on economic aspects of domestic and international tax policy. OTA is responsible for official Administration estimates of all Federal receipts included in the President's Budget and Mid-Session Review, and revenue estimates for actual and proposed tax legislation, earmarked revenue allocated to various trust funds, Treasury cash management decisions, and the Tax Expenditure Budget. OTA staff also engage in tax treaty negotiations with foreign governments and participate in meetings of international organizations.
OTA develops and operates several major microsimulation models and maintains large statistical databases to analyze the economic, distributional, and revenue effects of alternative tax proposals and tax systems. Many of the large microdata files used in OTA's models are developed from samples of tax returns prepared by the IRS Statistics of Income Division under the Office's direction.
OTA helps administer the Internal Revenue Code by assisting the IRS in conducting studies of tax compliance and taxpayer compliance burdens, developing and revising tax forms and, alongside the Tax Legislative Counsel, International Tax Counsel, and Benefits Tax Counsel staffs, in formulating and reviewing tax regulations.

The Director of the Office of Tax Analysis, advises and assists the Office by assessing, from an economic and policy perspective, all major tax initiatives, including the Administration's and Congressional tax proposals, and studies the effects of the existing tax law and alternative tax programs.  The Director of the Office of Tax Analysis is Janet McCubbin.

The Five Divisions of the Office of Tax Analysis:

The Business and International Taxation Division develops and analyzes tax policies affecting businesses and international taxation. The Division provides economic analyses and conducts research on tax provisions affecting corporations, partnerships and other unincorporated businesses, financial institutions and products, and energy and the environment, including taxes on income, consumption, and capital income, and business excise taxes. In recent years, the Division has devoted substantial attention to analyzing corporate tax shelters, depreciation allowances, integration of corporate and personal income taxes, and options to simplify and reform business taxation. The Division also analyzes and researches the taxation of both income earned outside the United States by U.S. citizens, residents, and domestic corporations and income earned within the United States by foreign corporations and nonresidents. Along with the Office of the International Tax Counsel, the Division engages in tax treaty negotiations with foreign governments and participates in meetings of international organizations. The Division works closely with the Office of the Tax Legislative Counsel to develop legislative proposals and regulations. Edith Brashares is the Director of the Business and International Taxation Division.

The Economic Modeling and Computer Applications Division develops and maintains several major simulation models which are used to provide estimates and analyses of changes in current or proposed tax legislation. Currently, there are five major production modeling systems: the individual income tax model, the corporate tax model, the corporate panel model, the depreciation model, and the estate tax model. Other specialized modeling systems include the corporate receipts model, the banking model, the life insurance calculator, the capital gains panel study, and the collation of estate and income tax returns. Results from these modeling systems are used in mandated studies, official testimony, the Federal budget, and other economic analyses. Considerable time and effort is spent by the Division in developing new data sources and improving simulation methodologies to meet Office of Tax Policy needs.  Robert Gillette is the Director of the Economic Modeling and Computer Applications Division.

The Individual Taxation Division develops policy proposals and provides analysis of the impact of existing and proposed individual income tax provisions on economic activity and welfare, marginal tax rates, and the distribution of the tax burden among families. Policy issues include the structure of tax rates, the tax treatment of different types of families, savings incentives, the tax treatment of pensions and health insurance, education incentives, tax-exempt bonds, and income tax compliance. The Division also is responsible for policy development and analysis of payroll taxes, excise taxes, estate and gift taxes, and nonprofit organizations. 

The Business and Individual Revenue Divisions produce estimates of revenue changes associated with the Administration’s, as well as major Congressional, tax proposals. These estimates are used to evaluate the proposals and assist in determining related Administration policy positions. The Divisions also provide the official Administration forecasts of all Federal receipts and estimates of Tax Expenditures included in the President's Budget and Mid-Session Review. The Divisions provide the Office of the Fiscal Assistant Secretary with monthly receipts forecasts for use in determining the timing and size of government borrowing, and calculate amounts to be deposited into numerous federal trust funds. Because the staff is responsible for revenue estimates for business, estate and gift, excise, individual and payroll tax proposals, they work closely with the other divisions in developing Treasury tax proposals and responding to Congressional proposals in these areas. Curtis Carlson is the Director of the Business Revenue Division. J. Scott Jaquette is the Director of the Individual Revenue Division.


Please visit the Resource Center of the Office of Tax Policy for access to papers, testimony, reports and other documents: 


For additional tax-related resources, please visit:


Director Office of Tax Analysis
Department of the Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Room 4116
Washington DC,  20220

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Last Updated :11/26/2018 10:35 AM