Tax Expenditures in Canada—Historical Estimates and Analysis

John Lester, Canadian Tax Journal (2019; 67(3))
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Paper Citation

Lester, John (2019), “Tax Expenditures in Canada—Historical Estimates and Analysis”, Canadian Tax Journal Vol. 67(3), 755-73.

Paper Abstract

The “Finances of the Nation” feature presents annual surveys of provincial and territorial budgets and data-driven analyses of taxation and public expenditures in Canada. This series is a successor to the annual monograph titled Finances of the Nation (and, previously, The National Finances), published from 1954 to 2013 by the Canadian Tax Foundation.
The key data sets prepared for the Finances of the Nation project are available for down- load at
In this article, John Lester describes the federal tax expenditures database developed as part of the Finances of the Nation data portal. He also uses the database to analyze trends in federal tax expenditures over a 21-year period ending in 2019 and to identify the bene- ficiaries and the activities supported by these measures.