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Poverty Measurement Under Income Risk

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  • Hans-Peter Weikard

    ()
    (Wageningen University)

Abstract

Poverty indices are usually calculated on the basis of (cross section) income data from the past. As past income is fixed and future income is uncertain such measurement does not reflect the ex ante risk of falling into poverty. This paper presents refinements of commonly used poverty measures to account for income risk. It is shown that the standard headcount ratio underestimates poverty in societies with moderate poverty if income is risky. The Foster, Greer and Thorbecke measure always underestimates poverty if income risk is neglected.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics in its journal Journal of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 224 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 337-350

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Handle: RePEc:jns:jbstat:v:224:y:2004:i:3:p:337-350

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Keywords: Poverty measurement; income risk; underestimation of poverty;

References

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  1. Simon Burgess & Karen Gardiner & Stephen P Jenkins & Carol Propper, 2000. "Measuring Income Risk," CASE Papers case40, Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, LSE.
  2. Ann Huff Stevens, 1995. "Climbing Out of Poverty, Falling Back In: Measuring the Persistence of Poverty over Multiple Spells," NBER Working Papers 5390, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Stevens, Ann Huff, 1994. "The Dynamics of Poverty Spells: Updating Bane and Ellwood," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 34-37, May.
  4. Bird, Edward J, 1995. "An Exploratory Comparison of Income Risk in Germany and the United States," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 41(4), pages 405-26, December.
  5. Richard Blundell & Thomas M. Stoker, 1994. "Consumption and the timing of income risk," IFS Working Papers W94/09, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  6. Richard Blundell & Ian Preston, 1998. "Consumption Inequality And Income Uncertainty," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(2), pages 603-640, May.
  7. Gabbert, Silke & Weikard, Hans-Peter, 2001. "How widespread is undernourishment?: A critique of measurement methods and new empirical results," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 209-228, June.
  8. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio & Terlizzese, Daniele, 1996. "Income Risk, Borrowing Constraints, and Portfolio Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 158-72, March.
  9. Mary Jo Bane & David T. Ellwood, 1986. "Slipping into and out of Poverty: The Dynamics of Spells," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(1), pages 1-23.
  10. Udo Ebert & Patrick Moyes, 2002. "A Simple Axiomatization of the Foster, Greer and Thorbecke Poverty Orderings," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 4(4), pages 455-473, October.
  11. Bird, Edward J & Hagstrom, Paul A, 1999. "The Wealth Effects of Income Insurance," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 45(3), pages 339-52, September.
  12. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-66, May.
  13. Sen, Amartya K, 1976. "Poverty: An Ordinal Approach to Measurement," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(2), pages 219-31, March.
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