Tax Burdens Around the World: U.S. Near the Middle

by: Mark J. Perry

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THE ECONOMIST--Paying taxes is, for most people, both unavoidable and irksome. But how much hard-earned pay is taken by governments varies considerably across the world. Among the rich countries of the OECD, Germans shell out the most, with a worker earning an average income giving 43% of their gross pay to the state, with nearly half of that going towards social security.

Workers in Poland hand over nearly 25% of their wages to social security; whereas Australians pay nothing at all directly. Mexicans and South Koreans enjoy the lightest taxation by some way (see chart above).