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The Impact of the ObamaCare Excise Tax on Innovation and Entrepreneurship Early Empirical Findings

1,3Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute for Entrepreneurship, Technology-Management and Innovation (EnTechnon), Karlsruhe, Germany ,
2Ulm University, Gesellschaft fuer Finanz- und Aktuarwissenschaften mbH, Ulm, Germany

International Journal of Innovation Science

ISSN: 1757-2223

Article publication date: 14 June 2015



This study addresses aspects of governmental influence on innovation by analyzing the impact of the ObamaCare excise tax on the medical device industry. We initially give an overview of common approaches to measuring innovativeness and entrepreneurship, empirically assess whether existing metrics are suitable for investigating the innovation performance of the U.S. medical device industry, and define a new measure (firm innovation activity) for entrepreneurship. Then we perform a quantitative analysis to explore the impact of the tax. We analyze more than 60,000 product clearances from 1996 to 2013, using the FDA database. We find a significant relationship between product counts and revenues for one segment. Contrary to the present criticism of the excise tax, we find hardly any noteworthy response in either firm innovation activity or number of products launched in the year after the tax was introduced. The 2013 reduction of new product submissions is well within the limits of typical annual fluctuations observed in previous years. This provides a first indication that the excise tax act did not have a strong impact on innovative activities through the present.


Singh, M.D., Russ, J. and Terzidis, O. (2015), "The Impact of the ObamaCare Excise Tax on Innovation and Entrepreneurship Early Empirical Findings", International Journal of Innovation Science, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 75-90.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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