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Imperfect Information and the Meltzer-Richard Hypothesis

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  • Christian Bredemeier

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Abstract

Despite a strong theoretical prediction that income skewness and redistribution should be positively linked, empirical evidence on this issue is mixed. This paper argues that it is important to distinguish between sources of changes in income skewness. Two sources of such changes are discussed: rising polarization and upward mobility, which both increase income skewness. Under imperfect information, these developments affect redistribution in different ways. While rising polarization increases redistribution, upward mobility can have the opposite effect. Reasonable degrees of informational imperfection are sufficient to generate increasing income skewness and decreasing redistribution in the presence of upward mobility.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen in its series Ruhr Economic Papers with number 0213.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0213

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Keywords: Voting; redistribution; imperfect information;

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Cited by:
  1. Bethencourt, Carlos & Kunze, Lars, 2013. "The political economics of redistribution, inequality and tax avoidance," MPRA Paper 51127, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Engelhardt, Carina & Wagener, Andreas, 2014. "Biased Perceptions of Income Inequality and Redistribution," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-526, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.

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