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The Effects of Relative Income and Absolute Income on Happiness

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  • Hung-Lin Tao
  • Shih-Yung Chiu
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    Abstract

    The authors consider the absolute income effect and several relative income effects on happiness. The latter include both a longitudinal comparison, which consists of both upward and downward comparisons, and a parallel comparison with individuals of similar traits. It is found that the longitudinal comparison and parallel comparison exist simultaneously, although the downward comparison is insignificant. However, the symmetry of the upward comparison, downward comparison, and parallel comparison cannot be rejected. Because the absolute income effect and the relative income effects countervail, the effect of income growth on subjective well-being is likely to be negligible. Copyright � 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation � 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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    Bibliographic Info

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

    Volume (Year): 13 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (02)
    Pages: 164-174

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:rdevec:v:13:y:2009:i:1:p:164-174

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    Web page: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=1363-6669

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    Cited by:
    1. Aguilar, Alexandra Cortés & García Muñoz, Teresa M. & Moro-Egido, Ana I., 2013. "Heterogeneous self-employment and satisfaction in Latin America," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 44-61.
    2. Verme, Paolo, 2013. "The relative income and relative deprivation hypotheses : a review of the empirical literature," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6606, The World Bank.
    3. Wen-Chun Chang, 2013. "Climbing up the Social Ladders: Identity, Relative Income, and Subjective Well-being," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 113(1), pages 513-535, August.
    4. Hui-Chuan Hsu, 2010. "Trajectory of Life Satisfaction and its Relationship with Subjective Economic Status and Successful Aging," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 99(3), pages 455-468, December.

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