Income and Wealth Distributions Along the Business Cycle: Implications from the Neoclassical Growth Model
This paper studies the business cycle dynamics of income and wealth distributions in the context of the neoclassical growth model where agents are heterogeneous in initial wealth and non-acquired skills. Our economy admits a representative consumer which enables us to characterize distributive dynamics by the evolution of aggregate quantities. We show that inequality in both wealth and income follow a countercyclical pattern: the former is countercyclical because labor income is more sensitive to the business cycle than capital income, while the latter is countercyclical due to the wealth-distribution effect. We find that the predictions of the model about the income distribution dynamics accord well with the U.S. data.
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Volume (Year): 5 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 (June)
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