Tax group questions Obama's expensing proposal

But, as the Policy Center points out, it did not work as well as expected. 

"[Economic] research suggests that bonus depreciation enacted in 2002 and 2003 had relatively modest effects," it states. 

The center cited several reasons why businesses may not have capitalized on the provision, including that some of them simply don't have the income to offset the tax break, which happens during economic downturns. 

The center also points out that certain small businesses can already fully expense the cost of investments using Section 179 of the tax code. 

In addition, Obama's proposal might simply shift the timing of businesses making the investment, thereby providing little stimulus over the long term. 

"[Because] the provision primarily leads businesses to move their investment up in time and not to increase overall investment, it may lead businesses to reduce investment when the provision expires," the center states. "If the economy is still in recession at that point, this could be especially undesirable."

The center's study can be found at: