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The measurement of income mobility: A partial ordering approach

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Author Info

  • Tapan Mitra

    (Department of Economics, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA)

  • Efe A. Ok

    (Department of Economics, New York University, 269 Mercer St., New York, NY 10003, USA)

Abstract

Given a set of longitudinal data pertaining to two populations, a question of interest is the following: Which population has experienced a greater extent of income mobility? The aim of the present paper is to develop a systematic way of answering this question. We first put forth four axioms for income movement-mobility indices, and show that a familiar class of measures is characterized by these axioms. An unambiguous (partial) ordering is then defined as the intersection of the (complete) orderings induced by the mobility measures which belong to the characterized class; a transformation of income distributions is "more mobile" than another if, and only if, the former is ranked higher than the latter for all mobility measures which satisfy our axioms. Unfortunately, our mobility ordering depends on a parameter, and therefore, it is not readily apparent how one can apply it to panel data directly. In the second part of the paper, therefore, we derive several sets of parameter-free necessary and sufficient conditions which allow one to use the proposed mobility ordering in making unambiguous income mobility comparisons in practice.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Economic Theory.

Volume (Year): 12 (1998)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 77-102

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Handle: RePEc:spr:joecth:v:12:y:1998:i:1:p:77-102

Note: Received: July 12, 1995; revised version: May 13, 1997
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Web page: http://link.springer.de/link/service/journals/00199/index.htm

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Cited by:
  1. repec:ese:iserwp:2006-36 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. repec:ese:iserwp:2013-23 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Van Kerm, Philippe, 2006. "Comparisons of income mobility profiles," IRISS Working Paper Series 2006-03, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
  4. Robert Aebi & Klaus Neusser & Peter Steiner, 2004. "Equilibrium Mobility," Diskussionsschriften dp0408, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.
  5. Markus Jäntti & Stephen P. Jenkins, 2013. "Income Mobility," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 607, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  6. Robert Aebi & Klaus Neusser & Peter Steiner, 2006. "A Large Deviation Approach to the Measurement of Mobility," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 142(II), pages 195-222, June.
  7. Marat Ibragimov & Rustam Ibragimov, 2007. "Market Demand Elasticity and Income Inequality," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 32(3), pages 579-587, September.
  8. Luis Ayala & Mercedes Sastre, 2008. "The structure of income mobility: empirical evidence from five UE countries," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 35(3), pages 451-473, November.
  9. C. Schluter & D. Van De Gaer, 2008. "Structural Mobility, Exchange Mobility and Subgroup Consistent Mobility Measurement – US–German Mobility Measurements Revisited," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 08/543, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  10. Marcello D’Agostino & Valentino Dardanoni, 2009. "What’s so special about Euclidean distance?," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 33(2), pages 211-233, August.
  11. Valentino Dardanoni & Marcello D’Agostino, 2007. "The Measurement of Rank Mobility," Working Papers 80, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  12. Yoram Amiel & Michele Bernasconi & Michele Bernasconi & Frank A Cowell & Valentino Dardanoni & Valentino Dardanoni, 2013. "Do We Value Mobility?," STICERD - Public Economics Programme Discussion Papers 17, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  13. Yélé Maweki Batana & Jean-Yves Duclos, 2010. "Testing for Mobility Dominance," Cahiers de recherche 1002, CIRPEE.

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