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Federal Income Tax

OECD Report: Income taxes in the U.S. are relatively low

April 12, 2017
Photo of 20 dollars by Vitaly, Sand City, United States - via Unsplash

Americans love to gripe about income tax rates, particularly in April.

However a new report indicates that U.S. tax rates aren’t that high compared to other developed countries.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released its annual Taxing Wages report yesterday. The study finds that the tax burden of U.S. workers is below average on a global scale.

The average single U.S. worker with no children paid a 32 percent overall tax rate in 2016 compared to the OECD aver of 36 percent.

Single workers in Belgium were hit the hardest with a 54 percent overall tax rate, whereas single workers in Chile only had a 7 percent tax rate. Canada and the United Kingdom had overall tax rates similar to the U.S. at 31 percent each.

One important note about the tax rates — they apply to income and don’t include things like sales and property taxes which are significant in certain U.S. states, like Texas.


Sorry America, Your Taxes Aren’t High,” Ben Steverman, Bloomberg

Taxing Wages 2017,” OECD. (PDF)

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