Travis Chow
Prof. Travis CHOW
Accounting and Law
Assistant Professor

3917 4216

KK 1234

Reciprocity in Corporate Tax Compliance—Evidence from Ozone Pollution

In a tax—public goods reciprocity framework between citizens and the state, managers view taxes as a payment to the government in exchange for public goods, and hence they adjust their willingness to pay taxes as public good quality changes. We show that corporate tax planning intensity increases with ground-level ozone pollution. Revisions in ozone pollution regulations cause counties that failed the revised and more stringent standards to reduce ozone pollution. Consequently, firms headquartered in these counties reduced corporate tax planning intensity relative to firms in other counties. The ozone-tax link varies in the predicted directions with public attention to pollution, potential welfare loss due to ozone, managers’ stakeholder orientation, taxpayers’ polluting status, political preferences, and civic norms. We also find consistent results for Superfund cleanups of hazardous waste sites. Our research sheds light on reciprocity as a potential mechanism influencing corporate tax compliance.

Profit Shifting during Foreign Tax Holidays

We undertake the first empirical analysis of profit shifting by U.S. firms during foreign tax holidays. We show that foreign tax holidays have become a prevalent and powerful tax planning strategy among U.S. firms. We find that U.S. firms significantly increase their outbound profit shifting while participating in foreign tax holidays. However, we also find that profit shifting associated with tax holidays comes at the cost of increased tax uncertainty. Our results have important implications for policy making and for understanding firm behavior.

The Influence of Corporate Income Taxes on Investment Location: Evidence from Corporate Headquarters Relocations

This study examines the effects of jurisdictions’ corporate taxes and other policies on firms’ headquarters (HQ) location decisions. Using changes in state corporate income tax rates across time and states as the setting, we find that a one-percentage-point increase in the HQ state corporate income tax rate increases the likelihood of firms relocating their HQ out of the state by 16.8%, and an equivalent decrease in the HQ state rate decreases the likelihood of HQ relocations by 9.1%. Exploiting the unique tax policy features within the state apportionment system lends strong support to the interpretation that taxation drives this effect. Our analyses also demonstrate that state income tax features affect the destination of the HQ move. We contribute to the literature on corporate decision making by showing how state income taxation affects a real corporate decision that has significant economic consequences for the company and the state.

Dive Deep and Touch the Bedrock of Business – Dr. Ka Chung Travis Chow

I am thrilled to be back and am looking forward to the opportunities to contribute to the HKU community in a variety of meaningful ways, including knowledge creation and talent grooming.

Dive Deep and Touch the Bedrock of Business – Dr. Ka Chung Travis Chow

Accumulating years of research and teaching experiences in Canada and Singapore, Dr. Chow believes that it is the time for him to return and contribute to the city that raises him. Joining us in July 2020, Dr. Chow is an Assistant Professor in Accounting.