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On the Income Dependence of Equivalence Scales

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  • Christos Koulovatianos
  • Carsten Schroder
  • Ulrich Schmidt

Abstract

We suggest a simple survey method for obtaining direct subjective estimates of equivalence scales, also appropriate for testing whether equivalence scales depend on reference-household income. We implement our approach in two countries, Germany and France. In both countries independence of base is rejected. In particular, we find that equivalence scales depend negatively on reference income, an indication of increasing economies of scale in household consumption as living standards go up. Our estimation method is non-parametric, and it allows us to test generalized equivalence-scale exactness, which is not rejected in any of our samples.

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File URL: http://papers.econ.ucy.ac.cy/RePEc/papers/1-2004.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Cyprus Department of Economics in its series University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics with number 1-2004.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ucy:cypeua:1-2004

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Web page: http://www.econ.ucy.ac.cy

Related research

Keywords: equivalence scales; survey method; independence of base;

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  1. Bernard M. S. van Praag & Nico L. van der Sar, 1988. "Household Cost Functions and Equivalence Scales," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 23(2), pages 193-210.
  2. Hagenaars, Aldi J M & van Praag, Bernard M S, 1985. "A Synthesis of Poverty Line Definitions," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 31(2), pages 139-54, June.
  3. Donaldson, D. & Pendakur, K., 1999. "Equivalent-Income Functions and Income-Dependent Equivalence Scales," Discussion Papers dp99-8, Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University.
  4. Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner & John Knowles, . "More on Marriage, Fertility, and the Distribution of Inocome," CARESS Working Papres 99-05, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
  5. S. Rao Aiyagari & Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner, 2000. "On the State of the Union," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(2), pages 213-244, April.
  6. Angus Deaton & Christina Paxson, 1998. "Economies of Scale, Household Size, and the Demand for Food," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(5), pages 897-930, October.
  7. Nezih Guner & Jeremy Greenwood, 2004. "Marriage and Divorce since World War II: Analyzing the Role of Technological Progress on the Formation of Households," 2004 Meeting Papers 65, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Banks, James & Johnson, Paul, 1994. "Equivalence Scale Relativities Revisited," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(425), pages 883-90, July.
  9. Li Gan & Victoria Vernon, 2003. "Testing the Barten Model of Economies of Scale in Household Consumption: Toward Resolving a Paradox of Deaton and Paxson," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1361-1377, December.
  10. Jesus Fernandez-Villaverde & Dirk Krueger, 2002. "Consumption over the Life Cycle: Some Facts from Consumer Expenditure Survey Data," Centro de Alti­simos Estudios Ri­os Pe©rez(CAERP) 7, Centro de Altisimos Estudios Rios Perez (CAERP).
  11. van Praag, Bernard & Goedhart, Theo & Kapteyn, Arie, 1980. "The Poverty Line-A Pilot Survey in Europe," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 62(3), pages 461-65, August.
  12. Nezih Guner & Jeremy Greenwood & John A. Knowles, 2000. "Women on Welfare: A Macroeconomic Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 383-388, May.
  13. Bruce Bradbury, 1995. "Household Semi-public Goods and the Estimation of Consumer Equivalence Scales: Some First Steps," Discussion Papers 0059, University of New South Wales, Social Policy Research Centre.
  14. Browning, Martin, 1992. "Children and Household Economic Behavior," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1434-75, September.
  15. van Praag, Bernard M S & Hagenaars, Aldi J M & van Weeren, Hans, 1982. "Poverty in Europe," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 28(3), pages 345-59, September.
  16. Knetsch, Jack L & Sinden, J A, 1984. "Willingness to Pay and Compensation Demanded: Experimental Evidence of an Unexpected Disparity in Measures of Value," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 99(3), pages 507-21, August.
  17. Pollak, Robert A & Wales, Terence J, 1979. "Welfare Comparisons and Equivalence Scales," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 216-21, May.
  18. Praag, B.M.S. van & Kapteyn, A.J., 1976. "A new approach to the construction of family equivalence scales," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-361896, Tilburg University.
  19. repec:fth:erroem:9234-a is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Bruce Bradbury, 1988. "Family Size Equivalence Scales and Survey Evaluation of Income and Well-Being," Discussion Papers 005, University of New South Wales, Social Policy Research Centre.
  21. Waldfogel, Joel, 1993. "The Deadweight Loss of Christmas," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1328-36, December.
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