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Economic Freedom
Free Market Friday: Misleading statements harmful

August 11, 2017 - 8:42am CDT

Former House Appropriations and Budget Chair Leslie Osborn recently stated Oklahoma is “50th in the nation in tax collections.” Calling for more tuition and fee increases on working Oklahoma families, University of Oklahoma President David Boren made a similar dead-last claim regarding state support... READ MORE

Blue-State Blues

August 10, 2017 - 3:38pm CDT

Throughout the entire 2017 legislative session, we heard sky-is-falling rhetoric from politicians and lobbyists. We were told Oklahoma must increase revenue or state agencies will face dire consequences. But despite all that noise, Oklahoma state government is now on track to spend more money next ... READ MORE

Oklahoma’s Private Sector Boosts Household Income

August 10, 2017 - 2:29pm CDT

In the June issue of Perspective (“Oklahoma State Budget Crisis: I Should Say So”), we measured the extent to which the public sector has crowded out the private sector in Oklahoma (see Chart 1). This is important because the evidence is clear that it is the relative size of the private sector that ... READ MORE

How Does Oklahoma’s Tax Burden Compare to Other States?

August 8, 2017 - 10:24am CDT

While many believe Oklahoma is a low-tax state, research by former Tax Foundation economist William Freeland questions this assumption. His study shows Oklahoma’s tax burden both as a share of state income and gross state product (GSP) and compares Oklahoma to the averages in all states. Freeland’s... READ MORE

Which Governors are Leading on Tax, Spending Issues?

July 17, 2017 - 3:15pm CDT

ALEC recently released its State of the States 2017 report, which analyzes economic policy proposals in governors’ state of the state addresses from across the country. It includes a “best of the best” and “worst of the worst” list, each featuring six governors. This year’s best of the best inc... READ MORE

Rating Agencies Used As Weapons Against Taxpayers

July 14, 2017 - 8:37am CDT

Citing a decline in "financial resilience,” Fitch Ratings recently downgraded the ratings on Oklahoma bonds. And earlier this year, both Standard & Poor's Global Ratings and Moody’s lowered their ratings on the state of Oklahoma’s bonds. Some now want to use these downgrades to justify tax hike... READ MORE

A Closer Look at S&P’s Bond Rating Downgrade of Oklahoma

July 13, 2017 - 3:15pm CDT

By William Freeland and Jonathan Small Earlier this year, Standard & Poor’s (S&P) downgraded Oklahoma government debt a notch. According to a March 1, 2017, “ratings action” memo: “S&P Global Ratings lowered its rating on the state of Oklahoma's general obligation (GO) bonds and appropriation d... READ MORE


July 13, 2017 - 11:18am CDT

By William Freeland and Jonathan Small Executive Summary Standard & Poor's (S&P) recent downgrade of Oklahoma state government debt should be considered with a healthy degree of skepticism. S&P has a dubious track record of accuracy, objectivity, and impartiality in bond ratings. Rather than r... READ MORE

What Drives Income Tax Revenues: Tax Rates or Economic Growth?

July 10, 2017 - 2:52pm CDT

Oklahoma’s marginal personal income tax rate has been reduced to 5% from 5.65% in 2007. Over those ten years, revenue from the personal income tax has fluctuated. The state collected $166,981,275 more from this tax in 2016 than in 2007, a 6.02% increase in tax collections. Examining the data suggest... READ MORE

Income Taxes & Team Success

July 10, 2017 - 11:46am CDT

By Mike Brake Want to help the Thunder win an NBA championship? Eliminate the state income tax! Okay, it’s not quite that simple. But a new study by a University of Illinois economist finds a clear correlation between state income tax rates and the winning (or losing) records of professional sport... READ MORE

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