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Income Inequality and Economic Freedom in the U.S. States

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  • Nathan J. Ashby

    (Department of Economics, West Virginia University)

  • Russell S. Sobel

    (Department of Economics, West Virginia University)

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of economic freedom on income inequality using cross-sectional data for U.S. states. While previous research has explored this relationship internationally, the results have been conflicting. In addition, while it seems obvious that the large institutional differences across countries will impact income inequality, it isn’t so obvious that the smaller variation in policies among U.S. states can have a measurable impact. Can improvements in income inequality be used as a justification for marginal pro-market policy reforms at the state level, or is this argument applicable only to national-level institutional reforms?

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File URL: http://www.be.wvu.edu/phd_economics/pdf/06-08.pdf
File Function: First version, 2006
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, West Virginia University in its series Working Papers with number 06-08 Classification-.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wvu:wpaper:06-08

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Web page: http://www.be.wvu.edu/phd_economics/
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References

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  1. Julio H. Cole & Robert A. Lawson, 2007. "Handling Economic Freedom in Growth Regressions: Suggestions for Clarification," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 4(1), pages 71-78, January.
  2. Jac C. Heckelman, 2005. "Proxies for Economic Freedom: A Critique of the Hanson Critique," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 72(2), pages 492–501, October.
  3. Steven F. Kreft & Russell S. Sobel, 2005. "Public Policy, Entrepreneurship, And Economic Freedom," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 25(3), pages 595-616, Fall.
  4. Julio H. Cole, 2003. "The Contribution of Economic Freedom to World Economic Growth: 1980-99," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 23(2), pages 189-198, Fall.
  5. Alfredo Esposto & Peter Zaleski, 1999. "Economic Freedom and the Quality of Life: An Empirical Analysis," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 185-197, June.
  6. Dawson, John W, 1998. "Institutions, Investment, and Growth: New Cross-Country and Panel Data Evidence," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 36(4), pages 603-19, October.
  7. Alesina, Alberto F & Rodrik, Dani, 1991. "Distributive Politics and Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 565, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Alesina, Alberto & Perotti, Roberto, 1994. "The Political Economy of Growth: A Critical Survey of the Recent Literature," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 8(3), pages 351-71, September.
  9. James D. Gwartney & Robert A. Lawson & Randall G. Holcombe, 1999. "Economic Freedom and the Environment for Economic Growth," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 155(4), pages 643-, December.
  10. Berggren, Niclas, 1999. " Economic Freedom and Equality: Friends or Foes?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 100(3-4), pages 203-23, September.
  11. Birdsall, Nancy & Ross, David & Sabot, Richard, 1995. "Inequality and Growth Reconsidered: Lessons from East Asia," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 9(3), pages 477-508, September.
  12. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1994. "Is Inequality Harmful for Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 600-621, June.
  13. Kristin J. Forbes, 2000. "A Reassessment of the Relationship between Inequality and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 869-887, September.
  14. Heckelman, Jac C & Stroup, Michael D, 2000. "Which Economic Freedoms Contribute to Growth?," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(4), pages 527-44.
  15. Nathan J. Ashby, 2007. "Economic Freedom and Migration Flows between U.S. States," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 73(3), pages 677–697, January.
  16. Berggren, Niclas, 2003. "The Benefits of Economic Freedom: A Survey," Ratio Working Papers 4, The Ratio Institute.
  17. repec:cto:journl:v:18:y:1998:i:2:p: is not listed on IDEAS
  18. Russell S. Sobel, 1999. "Theory and Evidence on the Political Economy of the Minimum Wage," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(4), pages 761-785, August.
  19. Scully, Gerald W, 2002. " Economic Freedom, Government Policy and the Trade-Off between Equity and Economic Growth," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 113(1-2), pages 77-96, October.
  20. Benjamin Powell, 2003. "Economic Freedom and Growth: The Case of the Celtic Tiger," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 22(3), pages 431-448, Winter.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Christian Bjørnskov & Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "The size and scope of government in the US states:Does party ideology matter?," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 162, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
  2. Compton, Ryan A. & Giedeman, Daniel C. & Hoover, Gary A., 2011. "Panel evidence on economic freedom and growth in the United States," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 423-435, September.
  3. Leeson, Peter T. & Ryan, Matt E. & Williamson, Claudia R., 2012. "Think tanks," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 62-77.
  4. Samuel Jones & Michael Stroup, 2013. "Economic freedom and the mispricing of single-state municipal bond closed-end funds," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 173-187, April.
  5. Gehring, Kai, 2012. "Benefit or burden? Unraveling the effect of economic freedom on subjective well-being," Working Papers 0531, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
  6. Apergis, Nicholas & Dincer, Oguzhan C. & Payne, James E., 2012. "Live free or bribe: On the causal dynamics between economic freedom and corruption in U.S. states," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 215-226.
  7. Thomas A. Garrett & Russell M. Rhine, 2010. "Economic freedom and employment growth in U.S. states," Working Papers 2010-006, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  8. Joshua Hall & David Yu, 2012. "Ranking the Economic Freedom of North America using dominetrics," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(3), pages 1949-1961.
  9. Bergh, Andreas & Nilsson, Therese, 2010. "Do liberalization and globalization increase income inequality?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 488-505, December.

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