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Spain is Different: Falling Trends of Inequality

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  • Pijoan-Mas, Josep
  • Sánchez-Marcos, Virginia

Abstract

In this article we characterize the evolution of inequality in hourly wages, hours of work, labor earnings, household disposable income and household consumption for Spain between 1985 and 2000. We look at both the Encuesta Continua de Presupuestos Familiares and the European Household Community Panel. Our analysis shows that inequality in individual net labor earnings and household net disposable income has decreased substantially. The decreases in the tertiary education premium and in the unemployment rate have been key ingredients to understand this falling trend. However, the inequality reduction has not been monotonic over the period: while it fell in years of economic expansion, there was an inequality surge in the recession of the early nineties. Public transfers have played a crucial role in smoothing out the inequality arising in the labor market, but instead the Spanish family does not seem to have been an important insurance mechanism. Regarding household consumption, inequality has fallen much less than inequality in household net disposable income, with the decrease mostly concentrated in the second half of the eighties. This suggests that the reduction in income inequality has affected the sources of permanent differences between households only during the second half of the eighties. Our estimates of the earnings process for the period are consistent with this view.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7489.

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Date of creation: Oct 2009
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7489

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Keywords: consumption inequality; income inequality; wage inequality;

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References

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  1. Fatih Guvenen, 2004. "Learning your Earning: Are Labor Income Shocks Really That Persistent?," 2004 Meeting Papers 177, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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  12. Orazio Attanasio & Hamish Low & Virginia Sánchez-Marcos, 2005. "Female Labor Supply As Insurance Against Idiosyncratic Risk," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 755-764, 04/05.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. ¿Vale la pena estudiar? (VI) La inusual caída de la ganancia salarial resultante de la educación avanzada
    by Luis Garicano in Nada Es Gratis on 2010-12-08 23:30:40
  2. Desigualdad, educación y construcción
    by Cives in Politikon on 2012-04-26 14:49:41
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Cited by:
  1. Zimmermann, Klaus F. & Biavaschi, Costanza & Eichhorst, Werner & Giulietti, Corrado & Kendzia, Michael J. & Muravyev, Alexander & Pieters, Janneke & Rodríguez-Planas, Núria & Schmidl, Ricarda, 2013. "Youth Unemployment and Vocational Training," Foundations and Trends(R) in Microeconomics, now publishers, vol. 9(1–2), pages 1-157, December.
    • Biavaschi, Costanza & Eichhorst, Werner & Giulietti, Corrado & Kendzia, Michael J. & Muravyev, Alexander & Pieters, Janneke & Rodríguez-Planas, Núria & Schmidl, Ricarda & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2012. "Youth Unemployment and Vocational Training," IZA Discussion Papers 6890, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Stéphane Bonhomme & Laura Hospido, 2012. "The cycle of earnings inequality: evidence from Spanish social security data," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1225, Banco de Espa�a.
  3. Romain Ranciere & Nathaniel A. Throckmorton & Michael Kumhof & Claire Lebarz & Alexander W. Richter, 2012. "Income Inequality and Current Account Imbalances," IMF Working Papers 12/8, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Jeremy Lise & Nao Sudo & Michio Suzuki & Ken Yamada & Tomoaki Yamada, 2013. "Wage, Income and Consumption Inequality in Japan, 1981-2008: from Boom to Lost Decades," Working Papers 2013-011, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  5. Raquel Carrasco & Juan F. Jimeno & A. Carolina Ortega, 2012. "Declining returns to skill and the distribution of wages : Spain 1995-2006," Economics Working Papers we1231, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  6. Pijoan-Mas, Josep & Sánchez-Marcos, Virginia, 2009. "Spain is Different: Falling Trends of Inequality," CEPR Discussion Papers 7489, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Salverda, Wiemer & Checchi, Daniele, 2014. "Labour-Market Institutions and the Dispersion of Wage Earnings," IZA Discussion Papers 8220, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Raquel Carrasco & Juan F. Jimeno & A. Carolina Ortega, 2011. "Accounting for changes in the Spanish wage distribution: the role of employment Composition effects," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1120, Banco de Espa�a.
  9. Virginia Maestri & Roventini, A. (Andrea), 2012. "GINI DP 30: Stylized Facts on Business Cycles and Inequality," GINI Discussion Papers 30, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.
  10. Ada Ferrer-i-carbonell & X. Ramos & M. Oviedo, 2013. "GINI Country Report: Growing Inequalities and their Impacts in Spain," GINI Country Reports spain, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.
  11. Manuel Hidalgo, 2009. "Are Within-Groups `Abilities' Distribution Constant on Time?," Working Papers 09.15, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Department of Economics.
  12. Aitor Lacuesta & Sergio Puente & Pilar Cuadrado, 2009. "Omitted variables in the measure of a labour quality index: the case of Spain," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0835, Banco de Espa�a.
  13. Amy Beech & Rosetta Dollman & Richard Finlay & Gianni La Cava, 2014. "The Distribution of Household Spending in Australia," RBA Bulletin, Reserve Bank of Australia, pages 13-22, March.
  14. Virginia Maestri & Andrea Roventini, 2012. "Inequality and Macroeconomic Factors: A Time-Series Analysis for a Set of OECD Countries," Working Papers 34/2012, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
  15. Aitor Lacuesta & Sergio Puente & Ernesto Villanueva, 2011. "The schooling response to a sustained increase in low-skill wages: evidence from Spain 1989-2009," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1208, Banco de Espa�a.
  16. Pablo D'Erasmo & Enrique G. Mendoza, 2013. "Distributional Incentives in an Equilibrium Model of Domestic Sovereign Default," NBER Working Papers 19477, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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