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A Reassessment of the Relationship between Inequality and Growth

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  • Kristin J. Forbes

Abstract

This paper challenges the current belief that income inequality has a negative relationship with economic growth. It uses an improved data set on income inequality, which not only reduces measurement error, but also allows estimation via a panel technique. Panel estimation makes it possible to control for time-invariant country-specific effects, therefore eliminating a potential source of omitted-variable bias. Results suggest that in the short and medium term, an increase in a country's level of income inequality has a significant positive relationship with subsequent economic growth. This relationship is highly robust across samples, variable definitions, and model specifications.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.90.4.869
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 90 (2000)
Issue (Month): 4 (September)
Pages: 869-887

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:90:y:2000:i:4:p:869-887

Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.90.4.869
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  1. Alesina, Alberto & Perotti, Roberto, 1994. "The Political Economy of Growth: A Critical Survey of the Recent Literature," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 8(3), pages 351-71, September.
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Rodrik, Dani, 1994. "Distributive Politics and Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(2), pages 465-90, May.
  3. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  4. Barro, Robert J & Lee, Jong Wha, 1996. "International Measures of Schooling Years and Schooling Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 218-23, May.
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  1. Doit-on craindre la hausse des inégalités ?
    by david.marguerit@gmail.com (David Marguerit) in BS Initiative on 2013-12-03 13:44:04
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