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Gini Indices and the Redistribution of Income

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  • Jean-Yves Duclos

Abstract

Just as the Gini inequality index captures people's relative deprivation (Yitzhaki, 1979), so, we show in this paper, Gini-based progressivity and horizontal inequity indices capture individual perceptions of relative fiscal harshness and ill-fortune. In fact, we find that these links between individualistic perceptions and the measurement of the distribution and redistribution of income generalise to the family of indices based on the extended Ginis of Donaldson and Weymark (1980) and Yitzhaki (1983). Through ''leaky bucket'' experiments, we also suggest how we can parameterise the inequality aversion present in these indices. Analysis of the Canadian gross and net income distributions (conducted using recently developed statistical inference procedures) shows the distribution and the aggregation of these individual indicators of relative deprivation, fiscal harshness and ill-fortune in 1981 and in 1990. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1008700419908
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal International Tax and Public Finance.

Volume (Year): 7 (2000)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 141-162

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Handle: RePEc:kap:itaxpf:v:7:y:2000:i:2:p:141-162

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=102915

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Keywords: inequality; progressivity; redistribution; horizontal inequity;

References

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  1. Garry F. Barrett & Krishna Pendakur, 1995. "The Asymptotic Distribution of the Generalized Gini Indices of Inequality," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(4b), pages 1042-55, November.
  2. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David, 1978. "Measures of relative equality and their meaning in terms of social welfare," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 59-80, June.
  3. Feldstein, Martin, 1976. "On the theory of tax reform," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 77-104.
  4. Clark, Andrew E. & Oswald, Andrew J., 1994. "Satisfaction and comparison income," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Couverture Orange) 9408, CEPREMAP.
  5. Kakwani, Nanok C, 1977. "Measurement of Tax Progressivity: An International Comparison," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 87(345), pages 71-80, March.
  6. Paul, Satya, 1991. "An index of relative deprivation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 337-341.
  7. Mehran, Farhad, 1976. "Linear Measures of Income Inequality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(4), pages 805-09, July.
  8. Aronson, J Richard & Johnson, Paul & Lambert, Peter J, 1994. "Redistributive Effects and Unequal Income Tax Treatment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(423), pages 262-70, March.
  9. DUCLOS, Jean-Yves, 1995. "Relative Performance, Relative Deprivation and Generalised Gini Indices of Inequality and Horizontal Inequity," Cahiers de recherche 9514, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  10. DAVIDSON, Russell & DUCLOS, Jean-Yves, 1995. "Statistical Inference for the Measurement of the Incidences of Taxes and Transfers," Cahiers de recherche 9521, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  11. DUCLOS, Jean-Yves, 1994. "Progressivity, Redistribution and Equity, with Application to the British Tax and Benefit System," Cahiers de recherche 9403, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  12. Donaldson, David & Weymark, John A., 1980. "A single-parameter generalization of the Gini indices of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 67-86, February.
  13. Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1979. "Relative Deprivation and the Gini Coefficient," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 93(2), pages 321-24, May.
  14. Kaplow, Louis, 1989. "Horizontal Equity: Measures in Search of a Principle," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 42(2), pages 139-54, June.
  15. Chakravarty, S. R. & Chakraborty, A. B., 1984. "On indices of relative deprivation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 14(2-3), pages 283-287.
  16. Blackburn, McKinley L., 1989. "Interpreting the magnitude of changes in measures of income inequality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 21-25, September.
  17. Pfahler, Wilhelm, 1987. "Redistributive Effects of Tax Progressivity: Evaluating a General Class of Aggregate Measures," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 42(1), pages 1-31.
  18. Duclos, Jean-Yves, 1997. "The asymptotic distribution of linear indices of inequality, progressivity and redistribution," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 51-57, January.
  19. Hey, John D & Lambert, Peter J, 1980. "Relative Deprivation and the Gini Coefficient: Comment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 95(3), pages 567-73, November.
  20. Kakwani, Nanak, 1980. "On a Class of Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(2), pages 437-46, March.
  21. Louis Kaplow, 1989. "Horizontal Equity: Measures in Search of a Principle," NBER Working Papers 1679, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Muliere, Pietro & Scarsini, Marco, 1989. "A note on stochastic dominance and inequality measures," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 314-323, December.
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