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Personal Assessments of Minimum Income and Expenses: What Do They Tell Us about 'Minimum Living' Thresholds and Equivalence Scales?

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Author Info

  • Thesia I. Garner

    ()
    (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

  • Kathleen Short

    (U.S. Census Bureau)

Abstract

Subjective minimum income (MIQ) and minimum spending (MSQ) are the study focus. Basic Needs Module (1995) data from the U.S. Survey of Income and Program Participation are analyzed. A regression intersection approach is used to estimate household thresholds. MIQ thresholds are higher than MSQ thresholds. Both are higher than U.S. official poverty thresholds, and thresholds based on a National Academy of Sciences (NAS) methodology. Subjective threshold based equivalence scales imply greater economies of scale than those in the other two measures but are similar to behavioral scales. This finding suggests that families make trade-offs to meet their minimum needs.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in its series Working Papers with number 379.

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Length: 65 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2005
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in John A. Bishop and Yoram Amiel, eds., Inequality, Welfare and Poverty: Theory and Measurement, Research on Economic Inequality, Vol. 9, Oxford, UK: Elsevier Science, 2003, pp.191-243.
Handle: RePEc:bls:wpaper:ec050050

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Keywords: well-being; sufficiency; poverty; expenditures; SIPP;

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References

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  1. Erich Battistin & Raffaele Miniaci & Guglielmo Weber, 2003. "What do we learn from recall consumption data?," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 466, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
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  9. de Vos, Klaas & Garner, Thesia I, 1991. "An Evaluation of Subjective Poverty Definitions: Comparing Results from the U.S. and the Netherlands," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 37(3), pages 267-85, September.
  10. Colasanto , D. & Gaag, J. van der & Kapteyn, A.J., 1984. "Two subjective definitions of poverty: Results from the Wisconsin basic needs study," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-364721, Tilburg University.
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Cited by:
  1. Thesia I. Garner & Kathleen Short, 2005. "Economic Well-Being Based on Income, Consumer Expenditures and Personal Assessments of Minimal Needs," Working Papers 381, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  2. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Klarita Gërxhani, 2011. "Financial Satisfaction and (in)formal Sector in a Transition Country," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 102(2), pages 315-331, June.
  3. Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Yue, Ximing, 2006. "Rural People’s Perception of Poverty in China," IZA Discussion Papers 2486, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Bjorn Gustafsson & Ximing Yue, 2012. "Rural people's perception of income adequacy in China," China Agricultural Economic Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 4(3), pages 264-280, October.

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