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Economic transition and the distributions of income and wealth


  • Francisco H. G. Ferreira


Using a model of wealth distribution dynamics and occupational choice, the author investigates the distributional consequences of policies and developments associated with the transition from central planning to a market system. The model suggests that even an efficient privatization designed to be egalitarian may lead to increases in inequality (and possibly poverty), both during the transition and in the new steady state. Creating new markets in services that are also supplied by the public sector may also contribute to an increase in inequality. So can labor market reforms that lead to a decompression of the earnings structure and to greater flexibility in employment. The results underline the importance of retaining government provision of basic public goods and services, removing barriers that prevent the participation of the poor in the new private sector, and ensuring that suitable safety nets are in place.
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Suggested Citation

  • Francisco H. G. Ferreira, 1999. "Economic transition and the distributions of income and wealth," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 7(2), pages 377-410, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:etrans:v:7:y:1999:i:2:p:377-410

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Oded Galor & Joseph Zeira, 1993. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(1), pages 35-52.
    2. Francisco H.G. Ferreira & Julie Litchfield, 1998. "Education or Inflation? The Roles of Structural Factors and Macroeconomic Instability in Explaining Brazilian Inequality in the 1980s," STICERD - Distributional Analysis Research Programme Papers 41, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
    3. Bénabou, Roland, 1996. "Unequal Societies," CEPR Discussion Papers 1419, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Atkinson,Anthony Barnes & Micklewright,John, 1992. "Economic Transformation in Eastern Europe and the Distribution of Income," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521438827, March.
    5. Simon Commander & Andrei Tolstopiatenko & Ruslan Yemtsov, 1999. "Channels of redistribution: Inequality and poverty in the Russian transition," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 7(2), pages 411-447, July.
    6. Thesia I. Garner & Katherine Terrell, 1997. "Changes in Distribution and Welfare in Transition Economies: Market vs. Policy in the Czech Republic and Slovakia," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 77, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
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    Cited by:

    1. Milanovic, Branko & Ersado, Lire, 2008. "Reform and Inequality during the Transition: An Analysis Using Panel Household Survey Data, 1990-2005," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4780, The World Bank.
    2. Bhandari, Bornali, 2007. "Effect of Inward Foreign Direct Investment on Income Inequality in Transition Countries," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 22, pages 888-928.
    3. Jang Ok Cho & Hyo-Youn Chu & Hyung Seok E. Kim & Jaywon Lee, 2016. "Productivity Distribution and Economic Growth," Korean Economic Review, Korean Economic Association, vol. 32, pages 23-40.
    4. Michal Brzezinski, 2017. "Income inequality and the Great Recession in Central and Eastern Europe," Working Papers 2017-28, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    5. Campos, Nauro F & De Grauwe, Paul & Ji, Yuemei, 2017. "Structural Reforms, Growth and Inequality: An Overview of Theory, Measurement and Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 11159, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Nixson, Frederick & Walters, Bernard, 2006. "Privatization, Income Distribution, and Poverty: The Mongolian Experience," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(9), pages 1557-1579, September.
    7. Aleksandra Parteka, 2012. "Skilled-Unskilled Wage Gap Versus Evolving Trade And Labour Market Structures in the EU," Working Papers 1204, Instytut Rozwoju, Institute for Development.
    8. Facundo Alvaredo & Leonardo Gasparini, 2013. "Recent Trends in Inequality and Poverty in Developing Countries," CEDLAS, Working Papers 0151, CEDLAS, Universidad Nacional de La Plata.
    9. Adam McCarty, 2001. "The Social Impact of the Reform Process," Development and Comp Systems 0110004, EconWPA.
    10. Birdsall, Nancy & Nellis, John, 2003. "Winners and Losers: Assessing the Distributional Impact of Privatization," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(10), pages 1617-1633, October.
    11. Xin Meng, 2004. "Economic Restructuring and Income Inequality in Urban China," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 50(3), pages 357-379, September.
    12. Claudia Senik, 2002. "When Information Dominates Comparison: A Panel Data Analysis Using Russian Subjective Data," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 495, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    13. Xin Meng, 2007. "Wealth Accumulation and Distribution in Urban China," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55, pages 761-791.
    14. David Aristei & Cristiano Perugini, 2014. "Speed and Sequencing of Transition Reforms and Income Inequality: A Panel Data Analysis," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 60(3), pages 542-570, September.
    15. Jens Holscher & Cristiano Perugini & Fabrizio Pompei, 2011. "Wage inequality, labour market flexibility and duality in Eastern and Western Europe," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(3), pages 271-310.
    16. Senik, Claudia, 2004. "When information dominates comparison: Learning from Russian subjective panel data," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 2099-2123, August.
    17. Brando Jovanovic, 2000. "Russian Roulette- Expenditure Inequality and Instability in Russia, 1994-1998," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 358, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    18. Nazim, Habibov & Elvin, Afandi, 2009. "Analysis of subjective wellbeing in low-income transitional countries: evidence from comparative national surveys in Armenia,Azerbaijan and Georgia," MPRA Paper 42720, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. Nauro F. Campos & Paul De Grauwe & Yuemei Ji, 2017. "Structural Reforms, Growth and Inequality: An Overview of Theory, Measurement and Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 6812, CESifo Group Munich.
    20. Kenneth Smith, 2001. "Age/Earnings Profiles in Transition Economies: The Estonian Case," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(4), pages 485-503.
    21. Aristei, David & Perugini, Cristiano, 2012. "Inequality and reforms in transition countries," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 2-10.
    22. Sonin, Konstantin, 1999. "Inequality, Property Rights Protection, and Economic Growth in Transition Economies: Theory and Russian Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 2300, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    23. Wan, Guanghua, 2002. "Income Inequality and Growth in Transition Economies: Are Nonlinear Models Needed?," WIDER Working Paper Series 104, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

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