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A Comparison of Alternative Measures of Economic Well-Being for Germany and the United States

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  • Burkhauser, Richard V
  • Frick, Joachim R
  • Schwarze, Johannes

Abstract

This paper, using six waves of data (1984-89) from the U.S. Panel Study of Income Dynamics and the German Socio-Economic Panel, compares economic well-being using single year income, multiyear income, and wealth as measures. The authors find inequality to be greater in the United States than in Germany regardless of the measure used. However, the relative degree of inequality varies across measures. When the authors disaggregate their data by age and gender categories, in general they find greater inequality in the United States, but wealth inequality among older Germans is greater than it is among older Americans. Copyright 1997 by The International Association for Research in Income and Wealth.

Suggested Citation

  • Burkhauser, Richard V & Frick, Joachim R & Schwarze, Johannes, 1997. "A Comparison of Alternative Measures of Economic Well-Being for Germany and the United States," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 43(2), pages 153-171, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:43:y:1997:i:2:p:153-71
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    Cited by:

    1. F. le R. Booysen, 2001. "Non-Payment Of Services: A Problem Of Ability-To-Pay," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 69(4), pages 674-697, December.
    2. Joachim R. Frick & Markus M. Grabka, 2000. "Personelle Einkommensverteilung und der Einfluß von Imputed Rent," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 225, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    3. Richard Hauser & Holger Stein, 2004. "Inequality of the Distribution of Personal Wealth in Germany 1973-1998," Microeconomics 0401005, EconWPA.
    4. Joachim R. Frick & Stephen P. Jenkins & Dean R. Lillard & Oliver Lipps & Mark Wooden, 2008. "Die internationale Einbettung des Sozio-oekonomischen Panels (SOEP) im Rahmen des Cross-National Equivalent File (CNEF)," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 77(3), pages 110-129.
    5. Goebel, Jan & Kuchler, Birgit, 2003. "Incidence and Intensity of Smoothed Income Poverty in European Countries," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 357-369.
    6. Molina, José Alberto & Navarro Paniagua, Maria & Walker, Ian, 2007. "Mums and Their Sons, Dads and Their Daughters: Panel Data Evidence of Interdependent Marginal Utilities across 14 EU Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 2734, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Almås, Ingvild & Mogstad, Magne, 2010. "Older or Wealthier? The Impact of Age Adjustment on Cross-Sectional Inequality Measures," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 9/2010, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
    8. Birgit Kuchler & Jan Goebel, 2003. "Smoothed Income Poverty in European Countries," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 352, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    9. Frick, Joachim R. & Jenkings, Stephen P. & Lillard, Dean R. & Lipps, Oliver & Wooden, Mark, 2007. "The Cross-National Equivalent File (CNEF) and Its Member Country Household Panel Studies," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 627-654.
    10. Martine Visser & Frikkie Booysen, 2004. "Determinants of the choice of health care facility utilised by individuals in HIV/AIDS-affected households in the Free State province of South Africa," SALDRU/CSSR Working Papers 087, Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit, University of Cape Town.
    11. Frikkie Booysen & Martine Visser, 2010. "Health Facility Choice In Hiv- And Aids-Affected Households In Two South African Communities," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 78(1), pages 89-106, March.
    12. Magne Mogstad & Ingvild Almås, 2009. "Older or Wealthier? The Impact of Age Adjustments on the Wealth Inequality Ranking of Countries," LWS Working papers 9, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    13. Christina Behrendt, 2000. "Is There Income Poverty in Western Europe? Methodological Pitfalls in the Measurement of Poverty in a Comparative Perspective," LIS Working papers 258, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    14. Fachinger, Uwe, 1998. "Die Verteilung der Vermögen privater Haushalte: Einige konzeptionelle Anmerkungen sowie empirische Befunde für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland," Working papers of the ZeS 13/1998, University of Bremen, Centre for Social Policy Research (ZeS).
    15. Frick Joachim R. & Grabka Markus M., 2001. "Der Einfluß von Imputed Rent auf die personelle Einkommensverteilung. The Impact of Imputed Rent on the Personal Distribution of Income," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 221(3), pages 285-308, June.
    16. Labeaga, José M. & Molina, José Alberto & Navarro Paniagua, Maria, 2007. "Income Satisfaction and Deprivation in Spain," IZA Discussion Papers 2702, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    17. Jan Goebel & Markus M. Grabka & Peter Krause & Martin Kroh & Rainer Pischner & Ingo Sieber & Martin Spieß, 2008. "Mikrodaten, Gewichtung und Datenstruktur der Längsschnittstudie Sozio-oekonomisches Panel (SOEP)," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 77(3), pages 77-109.
    18. Hisham S. El-Osta, 2010. "Inequality decomposition of farm family living expenditures and the role of the life cycle," Agricultural Finance Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 70(2), pages 245-266, August.
    19. Johannes Schwarze, 1998. "Der Einfluß alternativer Konzeptionen von Alterssicherungssystemen auf Sicherungsniveau, Altersarmut und Einkommensverteilung: ein Vergleich zwischen Deutschland und den USA," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 160, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    20. F. Le R. Booysen, 2004. "Income And Poverty Dynamics In Hiv/Aids-Affected Households In The Free State Province Of South Africa," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 72(3), pages 522-545, September.

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