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Poverty and expenditure pattern of households in Pakistan and South Africa: a comparative study

  • Ranjan Ray

    (University of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia)

This paper compares the poverty rates of male- and female-headed households in Pakistan and, also, in South Africa. It finds that in South Africa, female-headed households are unconditionally poorer than the others. In Pakistan, however, this result holds only in the presence of economies of household size and adult|child consumption relativities, not in the per capita case. The study estimates equivalence scales in the presence of non-linearities in the functional form, and provides evidence of significant economies of household size in both countries. The paper proposes an alternative test of gender bias in the intrahousehold allocation of resources, and applies it to the Pakistani and South African data sets. The results point to some interesting dissimilarities between the Pakistani and South African evidence. Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of International Development.

Volume (Year): 12 (2000)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 241-256

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Handle: RePEc:wly:jintdv:v:12:y:2000:i:2:p:241-256
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  1. Lancaster, Geoffrey & Ray, Ranjan, 1998. "Comparison of Alternative Models of Household Equivalence Scales: The Australian Evidence on Unit Record Data," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 74(224), pages 1-14, March.
  2. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-66, May.
  3. Lancaster, Geoffrey & Ray, Ranjan & Valenzuela, Maria Rebecca, 1999. "A Cross-Country Study of Household Poverty and Inequality on Unit Record Household Budget Data," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 48(1), pages 177-208, October.
  4. Haddad, L. & Hoddinott, J., 1991. "Gender Aspects of Household Expenditures and Resource Allocation in the Cote d'Ivoire," Economics Series Working Papers 99112, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  5. Haddad, Lawrence & Kanbur, Ravi, 1989. "How serious is the neglect of intrahousehold inequality ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 296, The World Bank.
  6. Quibria, M G, 1995. " Gender and Poverty: Issues and Policies with Special Reference to Asian Developing Countries," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(4), pages 373-411, December.
  7. J.V. Meenakshi & Ranjan Ray, 1999. "Impact of Household Size, Family Composition and Socio Economic Characteristics on Poverty in Rural India," Working papers 68, Centre for Development Economics, Delhi School of Economics.
  8. Dreze, Jean & Srinivasan, P. V., 1997. "Widowhood and poverty in rural India: Some inferences from household survey data," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 217-234, December.
  9. Bosch-Domenech, Antoni, 1991. "Economies of scale, location, age, and sex discrimination in household demand," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(8), pages 1589-1595, December.
  10. Grosh, M.E. & Glewwe, P., 1995. "A Guide to Living Standards Measurement Study Surveys and their Data Sets," Papers 120, World Bank - Living Standards Measurement.
  11. Handa, Sudhanshu, 1996. "Expenditure behavior and children's welfare: An analysis of female headed households in Jamaica," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 165-187, June.
  12. Subramaniam, Ramesh, 1996. "Gender-Bias in India: The Importance of Household Fixed-Effects," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(2), pages 280-99, April.
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