Profile Major Works Resources

Arnold C. Harberger, 1924-

Portrait of Arnold Harberger


American public finance economist at Chicago.

Arnold C. Harberger earned his B.A. at Johns Hopkins, then went on to received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1950, under Lloyd Metzler, with a thesis on currency devaluation.  After a stint as an instructor at Johns Hopkins,  Harberger returned and joined the Chicago faculty in 1953.  Harberger moved firmly in an applied direction, towards public finance.  His famous 1954 paper introduced the "Harberger Triangles", a measure of the deadweight loss from monopoly, or any degree of industrial concentration.  Harberger is also famous for his work on corporate taxation, notably his 1962 thesis that the incidence of corporate taxation also falls on the non-corporate sector.

Harberger went on to make several notable contributions on cost-benefit analysis, public finance and trade policy, with particular attention on developing countries.  Harberger is frequently referred as the mentor to the "Chicago Boys", the generation of Latin American economists trained under him at Chicago, responsible for introducing free market reforms in many Latin American countries since the 1980s.



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Major Works of Arnold C. Harberger

  • "Currency Depreciation, Income and the Balance of Trade", 1950, JPE [cwls]
  • "A Structural Approach to the Problem of Import Demand", 1953, AER  [cwls]
  • "Monopoly and Resource Allocation", 1954, AER
  • The Demand for Durable Goods, 1960.
  • "The Incidence of the Corporation Income Tax", 1962, JPE [pdf]
  • "The Measurement of Waste", 1964, AER
  • Project Evaluation, 1972.
  • Taxation and Welfare, 1974.
  • "On the Use of Distributional Weights in Social Cost-Benefit Analysis", 1978, JPE
  • Trade Policy and the Real Exchange Rate, 1985
  • "Corporate and Consumption Tax Incidence in an Open Economy", 1994 at ACCF [online]
  • "The ABCs of Corporation Tax Indidence", 1995 in Policy and Economic Growth [pdf]




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Resources on A.C. Harberger

  • Harberger homepage at Chicago
  • Harberger's page at UCLA
  • Cowles Commission archives: Harberger's discussion papers (1949-1953)
  • The annual Arnold C. Harberger lecture series at UCLA
  • "Interview with A.C. Harberger", 1999, at the Minneapolis Fed's The Region [online]
  • An Algebraic Statement of the Harberger Model (online)
  • "Three Sides of Harberger Triangles" by James R. Hines Jr. (pdf)
  • "Applied Public Finance meets General Equilibrium: the contributions of Arnold C. Harberger",  by J.R. Hines, 2002 (pdf)
  • Wikipedia


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