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The dynamics of child poverty in Sweden

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  • Matthew Lindquist

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  • Gabriella Sjögren Lindquist

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to study (empirically) the dynamics of child poverty in Sweden, the quintessential welfare state. We find that 1 out of every 5 children is disposable income poor at least once during his or her childhood, while only 2 percent of all children are chronically poor. We also document a strong life-cycle profile for child poverty. Just over 20 percent of all children are born into poverty. The average poverty rate then drops dramatically to about 7.5 percent among 1-year old children. After which, it declines (monotonically) to about 3.9 percent among 17-year olds. Children in Sweden are largely protected (economically) from a number of quite serious events, such as parental unemployment, sickness and death. Family dissolution and longterm unemployment, however, do push children into poverty. But for most of these children, poverty is only temporary. Single mothers, for example, are overrepresented among the poor, but not among the chronically poor. Children with immigrant parents are strongly overrepresented among the chronically poor; as are children whose parents have unusually low educations. We argue that information about the dynamics of child poverty may help policy makers to construct more salient policies for fighting child poverty.

(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Population Economics.

Volume (Year): 25 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
Pages: 1423-1450

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:25:y:2012:i:4:p:1423-1450

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Related research

Keywords: Child poverty; Chronic poverty; Poverty dynamics; I32; J13;

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References

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  1. Fertig, Michael & Tamm, Marcus, 2007. "Always Poor or Never Poor and Nothing in Between? Duration of Child Poverty in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 2645, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Thomas F. Crossley & Lori J. Curtis, 2006. "Child Poverty In Canada," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 52(2), pages 237-260, 06.
  3. Corak, Miles & Fertig, Michael & Tamm, Marcus, 2005. "A Portrait of Child Poverty in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 1528, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Markus JΣntti & Sheldon Danziger, 1994. "Child poverty in Sweden and the United States: The effect of social transfers and parental labor force participation," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(1), pages 48-64, October.
  5. Edin, P.-A. & Fredriksson, P., 2000. "LINDA - Longitudinal INdividual DAta for Sweden," Papers 2000-19, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  6. Lorenzo Cappellari & Stephen P. Jenkins, 2002. "Modelling Low Income Transitions," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 288, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  7. Bradbury,Bruce & Jenkins,Stephen P. & Micklewright,John (ed.), 2001. "The Dynamics of Child Poverty in Industrialised Countries," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521803106, October.
  8. Phipps, Shelley A & Burton, Peter S, 1998. "What's Mine Is Yours? The Influence of Male and Female Incomes on Patterns of Household Expenditure," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(260), pages 599-613, November.
  9. Hansen, Jörgen & Wahlberg, Roger, 2004. "Poverty Persistence in Sweden," IZA Discussion Papers 1209, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Carlson, Marcia & Danziger, Sheldon, 1999. "Cohabitation and the Measurement of Child Poverty," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 45(2), pages 179-91, June.
  11. 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.
  12. Bruce Bradbury & Markus Jantti, 1999. "Child Poverty across Industrialized Nations," Innocenti Occasional Papers, Economic Policy Series iopeps99/70, UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre.
  13. Pablo Antolín & Thai-Thanh Dang & Howard Oxley, 1999. "Poverty Dynamics in Four OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 212, OECD Publishing.
  14. Ross Finnie & Arthur Sweetman, 2003. "Poverty dynamics: empirical evidence for Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(2), pages 291-325, May.
  15. 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.
  16. Duncan, Greg J, et al, 1993. "Poverty Dynamics in Eight Countries," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 215-34.
  17. Bradbury,Bruce & Jenkins,Stephen P. & Micklewright,John (ed.), 2001. "The Dynamics of Child Poverty in Industrialised Countries," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521004923, October.
  18. Hansen, Jörgen & Wahlberg, Roger, 2004. "Poverty Persistence in Sweden," CEPR Discussion Papers 4539, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Galloway, Taryn Ann & Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Pedersen, Peder J. & Österberg, Torun, 2009. "Immigrant Child Poverty in Scandinavia: A Panel Data Study," IZA Discussion Papers 4232, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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Cited by:
  1. Jerome Adda & Anders Bjorklund & Helena Holmlund, 2011. "The Role of Mothers and Fathers in Providing Skills: Evidence from Parental Deaths," Economics Working Papers ECO2011/08, European University Institute.

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