Rising food prices and household welfare: Evidence from Brazil in 2008
AbstractFood price inflation in Brazil in the twelve months to June 2008 was 18 percent, while overall inflation was 5.3 percent. This paper uses spatially disaggregated monthly data on consumer prices and two different household surveys to estimate the welfare consequences of these food price increases, and their distribution across households. Because Brazil is a large food producer, with a predominantly wage-earning agricultural labor force, our estimates include general equilibrium effects on market and transfer incomes, as well as the standard estimates of changes in consumer surplus. While the expenditure (or consumer surplus) effects were large, negative and markedly regressive everywhere, the market income effect was positive and progressive, particularly in rural areas. Because of this effect on the rural poor, and of the partial protection afforded by increases in two large social assistance benefits, the overall impact of higher food prices in Brazil was U-shaped, with the middle-income groups suffering larger proportional losses than the very poor. Nevertheless, since Brazil is 80 percent urban, higher food prices still led to a greater incidence and depth of poverty at the national level.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality in its series Working Papers with number 200.
Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Food prices; welfare; poverty; inequality; price change incidence curve; Brazil.;
Other versions of this item:
- Francisco H. G. Ferreira & Anna Fruttero & Phillippe G. Leite & Leonardo R. Lucchetti, 2013. "Rising Food Prices and Household Welfare: Evidence from Brazil in 2008," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(1), pages 151-176, 02.
- Ferreira, Francisco H.G. & Fruttero, Anna & Leite, Phillippe & Lucchetti, Leonardo, 2011. "Rising Food Prices and Household Welfare: Evidence from Brazil in 2008," IZA Discussion Papers 5713, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Ferreira, Francisco H. G. & Fruttero, Anna & Leite, Phillippe & Lucchetti, Leonardo, 2011. "Rising food prices and household welfare : evidence from Brazil in 2008," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5652, The World Bank.
- D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
- I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
- O15 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2011-06-11 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2011-06-11 (All new papers)
- NEP-LAM-2011-06-11 (Central & South America)
- NEP-LTV-2011-06-11 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
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