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Income and wealth distribution in a simple model of growth

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  • Gerhard Sorger

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Queen Mary & Westfield College, Mile End Road, London E1 4NS, UK)

Abstract

This paper studies a deterministic one-sector growth model with a constant returns to scale production function and endogenous labor supply. It is shown that the distribution of capital among the agents has an effect on the level of per-capita output. There exists a continuum of stationary equilibria with different levels of per-capita output. If the elasticity of intertemporal substitution is large, a higher output level can be achieved when income inequality is great, that is, when the income distribution is strongly dispersed. If the elasticity of intertemporal substitution is low, the reverse relation holds. The paper shows that countries with identical production technologies and identical preferences may have different GDP levels because wealth is distributed differently among their inhabitants.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Economic Theory.

Volume (Year): 16 (2000)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 23-42

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Handle: RePEc:spr:joecth:v:16:y:2000:i:1:p:23-42

Note: Received: January 29, 1999; revised version: October 4, 1999
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Related research

Keywords: Growth; Inequality; One-sector model; Elasticity of intertemporal substitution.;

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References

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  1. S. Rao Aiyagari, 1993. "Uninsured idiosyncratic risk and aggregate saving," Working Papers 502, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Benhabib, Jess, 1998. "Introduction to Sunspots in Macroeconomics," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 1-6, July.
  3. Galor, Oded & Zeira, Joseph, 1993. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(1), pages 35-52, January.
  4. Chatterjee, Satyajit, 1994. "Transitional dynamics and the distribution of wealth in a neoclassical growth model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 97-119, May.
  5. Paul M Romer, 1999. "Increasing Returns and Long-Run Growth," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2232, David K. Levine.
  6. Becker, Robert A, 1980. "On the Long-Run Steady State in a Simple Dynamic Model of Equilibrium with Heterogeneous Households," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 95(2), pages 375-82, September.
  7. Robert J. Barro, 2013. "Inflation and Economic Growth," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 14(1), pages 121-144, May.
  8. Piketty, Thomas, 1997. "The Dynamics of the Wealth Distribution and the Interest Rate with Credit Rationing," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(2), pages 173-89, April.
  9. Benhabib Jess & Farmer Roger E. A., 1994. "Indeterminacy and Increasing Returns," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 19-41, June.
  10. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  11. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1994. "Is Inequality Harmful for Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 600-621, June.
  12. Eriksson, Clas, 1996. "Economic growth with endogenous labour supply," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 533-544, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Marat Ibragimov & Rustam Ibragimov, 2007. "Market Demand Elasticity and Income Inequality," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 32(3), pages 579-587, September.
  2. Stefano Bosi & Thomas Seegmuller, 2007. "On the Ramsey equilibrium with heterogeneous consumers and endogenous labor supply," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne v07003a, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne, revised Jul 2007.
  3. Koyuncu, Murat, 2011. "Can progressive taxation account for cross-country variation in labor supply?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(9), pages 1474-1488, September.
  4. Ghiglino, Christian & Venditti, Alain, 2011. "Wealth distribution and output fluctuations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 146(6), pages 2478-2509.
  5. Francesc Obiols-Homs, 2002. "Trade Effects on the Personal Distribution of Wealth," Working Papers 0208, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
  6. Ghiglino, Christian & Sorger, Gerhard, 2002. "Poverty Traps, Indeterminacy, and the Wealth Distribution," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 105(1), pages 120-139, July.
  7. BORISSOV, Kirill & LAMBRECHT, Stéphane, 2007. "Growth and distribution in an AK-model with endogenous impatience," CORE Discussion Papers 2007044, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  8. Kazuo Mino & Yasuhiro Nakamoto, 2008. "Progressive Taxation, Wealth Distribution, and Macroeconomic Stability," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 08-22, Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics and Osaka School of International Public Policy (OSIPP).
  9. Ayal Kimhi, 2004. "Growth, Inequality and Labor Markets in LDCs: A Survey," CESifo Working Paper Series 1281, CESifo Group Munich.
  10. Cecilia García-Peñalosa & Stephen Turnovsky, 2008. "Consumption externalities: a representative consumer model when agents are heterogeneous," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 439-467, December.

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