Household expenditure components and the poverty and inequality relationship in Malawi
AbstractThe paper looks at how inequality in household expenditure components affects total inequality and poverty in Malawi. Total household expenditure is disaggregated into four mutually exclusive and exhaustive expenditure items namely; expenditure on food, expenditure on health, expenditure on education, and expenditure on non food and non human capital items. Using data from the second integrated household survey (IHS2), we find that the elasticities of poverty with respect to within-component and between-component inequality are positive, suggesting that an increase within-component and between-component inequality increases overall poverty in Malawi. The results also show that the elasticities of poverty, as measured by the poverty gap and poverty indices, with respect to inequalities in expenditure on food and health are positive and are about the same in magnitude. The results vindicate the exemptions and zero rating of some food, health, and education related goods and services under the Value Added Tax (VAT) system. More importantly, they also suggest that expanding the coverage of zero rating and exemption would have a poverty reducing effect. These findings hold at the national level, as well as when rural and urban areas are treated separately. Additionally, the results are insensitive to choice of poverty line.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 31225.
Date of creation: 01 Jun 2011
Date of revision:
Inequality; poverty; Malawi;
Other versions of this item:
- Richard Mussa, 2014. "Household Expenditure Components and the Poverty and Inequality Relationship in Malawi," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 26(1), pages 138â147.
- D30 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - General
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AFR-2011-06-11 (Africa)
- NEP-AGR-2011-06-11 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2011-06-11 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2011-06-11 (Development)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2009.
"Inequality and the Impact of Growth on Poverty: Comparative Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa,"
Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series
9809, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2009. "Inequality and the Impact of Growth on Poverty: Comparative Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(5), pages 726-745.
- Fosu, Augustin Kwasi, 2008. "Inequality and the Impact of Growth on Poverty: Comparative Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Hentschel, J. & Lanjouw, P., 1996. "Constructing an Indicator of Consumption for the Analysis of Poverty. Principles and Illustrations with Reference to Ecuador," Papers 127, World Bank - Living Standards Measurement.
- Donaldson, David & Weymark, John A., 1980. "A single-parameter generalization of the Gini indices of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 67-86, February.
- Mukherjee, Sanjukta & Benson, Todd, 2003. "The Determinants of Poverty in Malawi, 1998," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 339-358, February.
- Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-66, May.
- Donaldson, David & Weymark, John A., 1983.
"Ethically flexible gini indices for income distributions in the continuum,"
Journal of Economic Theory,
Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 353-358, April.
- DONALDSON, David & WEYMARK, John A., . "Ethically flexible Gini indices for income distributions in the continuum," CORE Discussion Papers RP -520, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- Abdelkrim Araar & Jean-Yves Duclos, 2010. "Poverty and Inequality: A Micro Framework," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 19(3), pages 357-398, June.
- Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1983. "On an Extension of the Gini Inequality Index," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 24(3), pages 617-28, October.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.