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Income distribution trends in Brazil and China: Evaluating absolute and relative economic growth

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  • Coes, Donald V.

Abstract

Over the past two decades real per capita income has increased significantly in Brazil and spectacularly in China. Relative inequality in the distribution of income, however, has remained high in Brazil and has worsened in China. This paper uses a "stochastic dominance" approach to evaluate the welfare effects of a combination of rising mean per capita income in the context of worsening relative inequality. It concludes that by this criterion economic welfare in Brazil increased slightly in the 1981-2002 period. In China, the rapid increase in mean per capita was more than sufficient to overcome significantly increased relative inequality. Between 1985 and 2001 economic welfare thus increased substantially. The overall increase in welfare in both countries, however, is more complex when analyzed by consideration of specific time periods or by rural-urban decomposition.

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  • Coes, Donald V., 2008. "Income distribution trends in Brazil and China: Evaluating absolute and relative economic growth," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 359-369, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:quaeco:v:48:y:2008:i:2:p:359-369
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    9. Sen, Amartya, 1997. "On Economic Inequality," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198292975.
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    Cited by:

    1. Tingting Li & Hualou Long & Shuangshuang Tu & Yanfei Wang, 2015. "Analysis of Income Inequality Based on Income Mobility for Poverty Alleviation in Rural China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(12), pages 1-17, December.
    2. repec:gam:jsusta:v:7:y:2015:i:12:p:16362-16378:d:60411 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Angelos Liontakis & Christos T. Papadas & Irene Tzouramani, 2011. "Regional Economic Convergence in Greece: A Stochastic Dominance Approach," ERSA conference papers ersa10p1188, European Regional Science Association.

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