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Is The Kuznets Curve Still Alive? Evidence From Italian Household Budgets, 1881 1961

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  • Rossi, Nicola
  • Toniolo, Gianni
  • Vecchi, Giovanni

Abstract

We investigate secular changes in the distribution of personal expenditure in Italy. To this end we present a new data set, consisting of 4,370 family-level budgets scattered over the years 1881 1961. Our methodology is innovative for this kind of study. Italy s secular trend proves to have been egalitarian, and to have accelerated in periods of fast output growth. Sectoral, residential, and demographic changes associated with modern economic growth account for a minor part of the observed changes in expenditure distribution, suggesting that other factors, such as wage differentials, play a dominant role in explaining the dynamics of inequality.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal The Journal of Economic History.

Volume (Year): 61 (2001)
Issue (Month): 04 (December)
Pages: 904-925

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Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:61:y:2001:i:04:p:904-925_04

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Cited by:
  1. Andrea Brandolini & Giovanni Vecchi, 2011. "The Well-Being of Italians: A Comparative Historical Approach," Quaderni di storia economica (Economic History Working Papers) 19, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  2. Mollick, André Varella, 2012. "Income inequality in the U.S.: The Kuznets hypothesis revisited," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 127-144.

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