Engel's Law Reconsidered
Engel's Law expresses a negative stochastic association of the bivariate distribution of income and food share across a population. Among the many different definitions which can be found in the statistical literature four concepts are discussed and tested: Kendall's τ, quadrant dependence, stochastic decreasing conditional food share distribution function and decreasing regression. Only the last one is used in the economic literature, yet it does not imply useful information of the underlying distribution. For linking Engels's Law to micro-economics, stronger concepts of stochastic association are needed. This motivates the empirical study of the proposed alternative concepts of negative association.
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