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Three Poverties in Urban China

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  • John Knight
  • Li Shi

Abstract

Radical economic reform and rapid marketization in the late 1990s could be expected to create new poverty and insecurity in Chinese cities. Accordingly, the extent and nature of poverty in urban China is examined by means of a 1999 cross-section household survey. Three types of poverty-"income and consumption", "income not consumption" and "consumption not income"-are distinguished. A large proportion of the poor have income above, but consumption below, the poverty line. The estimated consumption function shows the importance of consumption smoothing, of precautionary considerations, of saving for investment opportunities, and of special needs related to the presence of children or sickness. An exercise is conducted to compare the three types of poverty by decomposing the divergence in the consumption of each poverty group from its benchmark consumption. Unpredicted financial assets and income, and differences in special needs, are important in contrasting and explaining the three poverties. Copyright � 2006 The Authors; Journal compilation � 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of Development Economics.

Volume (Year): 10 (2006)
Issue (Month): 3 (08)
Pages: 367-387

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Handle: RePEc:bla:rdevec:v:10:y:2006:i:3:p:367-387

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Cited by:
  1. Tilman Brück & Alexander M. Danzer & Alexander Muravyev & Natalia Weißhaar, 2007. "Determinants of Poverty during Transition: Household Survey Evidence from Ukraine," ESCIRRU Working Papers 2, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  2. Brück, Tilman & Danzer, Alexander M. & Muravyev, Alexander & Weisshaar, Natalia, 2010. "Poverty during transition: Household survey evidence from Ukraine," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 123-145, June.
  3. Meng, Xin & Gregory, Robert & Wang, Youjuan, 2005. "Poverty, inequality, and growth in urban China, 1986-2000," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 710-729, December.
  4. Björn Gustafsson & Li Shi & Hiroshi Sato, 2004. "Can a subjective poverty line be applied to China? Assessing poverty among urban residents in 1999," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(8), pages 1089-1107.
  5. Khor, Niny & Pencavel, John, 2008. "Measuring Income Mobility, Income Inequality, and Social Welfare for Households of the People’s Republic of China," ADB Economics Working Paper Series 145, Asian Development Bank.
  6. Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Yue, Ximing, 2006. "Rural People’s Perception of Poverty in China," IZA Discussion Papers 2486, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Quheng, Deng, 2007. "Social Assistance Receipt and its Importance for Combating Poverty in Urban China," IZA Discussion Papers 2758, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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