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Is power more evenly balanced in poor households?


  • Couprie, Hélène
  • Peluso, Eugenio
  • Trannoy, Alain


The structure of intra-household allocation is crucial to know whether a transfer from a rich household to a poor one translates into a transfer from a rich individual to a poor one. If rich households are more unequal than poor ones, then a progressive transfer among households reduces intra-household inequality, hence inequality among individuals. More specifically, two conditions have to be satisfied for extending Generalized Lorenz judgments from household level to individual one. The fraction of the couple's expenditures devoted to goods jointly consumed should decrease at the margin with the couple's income as well as the part of private expenditure devoted to the disadvantaged individual. This double concavity condition is non-parametrically tested on the French Household Expenditure Survey (2000). It is not rejected by the data and supports the view that power is more evenly distributed in poor households.

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  • Couprie, Hélène & Peluso, Eugenio & Trannoy, Alain, 2010. "Is power more evenly balanced in poor households?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(7-8), pages 493-507, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:94:y:2010:i:7-8:p:493-507

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Laurens Cherchye & Thomas Demuynck & Bram De Rock & Frederic Vermeulen, 2017. "Household Consumption When the Marriage Is Stable," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(6), pages 1507-1534, June.
    2. Udo Ebert, 2013. "The relationship between individual and household measures of WTP and WTA," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 40(2), pages 367-390, February.
    3. Couprie, Hélène & Peluso, Eugenio & Trannoy, Alain, 2010. "Is power more evenly balanced in poor households?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(7-8), pages 493-507, August.
    4. Laurens Cherchye & Thomas Demuynck & Bram De Rock & Frederic Vermeulen, 2014. "Household consumption when marriage is stable," IFS Working Papers W14/26, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    5. Laurens Cherchye & Sam Cosaert & Bram De Rock & Pieter Jan Kerstens & Frederic Vermeulen, 2017. "Individual Welfare Analysis for Collective Households," Working Papers ECARES ECARES 2017-44, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    6. Geoffrey R. Dunbar & Arthur Lewbel & Krishna Pendakur, 2017. "Identification of Random Resource Shares in Collective Households Without Preference Similarity Restrictions," Staff Working Papers 17-45, Bank of Canada.
    7. repec:kap:jecinq:v:15:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10888-017-9369-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Fleurbaey, Marc & Hagneré, Cyrille & Trannoy, Alain, 2014. "Welfare comparisons of income distributions and family size: An individualistic approach," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 12-27.

    More about this item


    Lorenz comparisons Intra-household inequality Sharing functions Non-parametric concavity test;

    JEL classification:

    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General


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