Should cash transfers be confined to the poor ? implications for poverty and inequality in Latin America
AbstractThis paper compares for 13 Latin American countries the poverty and inequality impacts of cash transfer programs that are given to all children and the elderly (that is,"categorical"transfers), to programs of equal budget that are confined to the poor within each population group (that is,"poverty targeted"transfers). The analysis finds that both the incidence of poverty and the depth of the poverty gap are important factors affecting the relative effectiveness of categorical versus poverty targeted transfers. The comparison of transfers to children and the elderly also supports the view that choosing carefully categories of beneficiaries is almost as important as targeting the poor for achieving a high poverty and inequality impact. Overall, the findings suggest that although in the Latin American context poverty targeting tends to deliver higher poverty impacts, there are circumstances under which categorical targeting confined to geographical regions (sometimes called"geographic targeting") may be a valid option to consider. This is particularly the case in low-income countries with widespread pockets of poverty.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5875.
Date of creation: 01 Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Rural Poverty Reduction; Services&Transfers to Poor; Regional Economic Development; Poverty Monitoring&Analysis;
Other versions of this item:
- Acosta, Pablo A. & Leite, Phillippe & Rigolini, Jamele, 2011. "Should Cash Transfers Be Confined to the Poor? Implications for Poverty and Inequality in Latin America," IZA Policy Papers 34, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- D6 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics
- H5 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies
- O1 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-11-14 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2011-11-14 (Development)
- NEP-LAM-2011-11-14 (Central & South America)
- NEP-LTV-2011-11-14 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
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.:
- Skoufias, Emmanuel & di Maro, Vincenzo, 2006.
"Conditional cash transfers, adult work incentives, and poverty,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
3973, The World Bank.
- Emmanuel Skoufias & Vincenzo Di Maro, 2008. "Conditional Cash Transfers, Adult Work Incentives, and Poverty," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(7), pages 935-960.
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