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Inequality and poverty in Greece: Changes in times of crisis

Listed author(s):
  • Eirini Andriopoulou

    ()

    (Hellenic Competition Commission)

  • Alexandros Karakitsios
  • Panos Tsakloglou

    ()

    (Athens University of Economics and Business)

Registered author(s):

    The Greek crisis was the deepest and longest ever recorded in an OECD country in the postwar period. Output declined by over a quarter and disposable income by more than 40%, while the unemployment rate exceeded 27%. The paper explores the effects of the crisis on the level and the structure of aggregate inequality and poverty using the data of EU-SILC for the period 2007-2014. The results show that inequality rose but the magnitude of the change varies across indices. The recorded increases are larger when the indices used are relatively more sensitive to changes close to the bottom of the income distribution. Unlike claims often made in the public discourse, the elderly improved their relative position in the income distribution while there was substantial deterioration in the relative position of the enlarged group of the unemployed. The contribution of disparities between educational groups to aggregate inequality declined while that of disparities between socio-economic groups rose. All poverty indicators suggest that poverty increased substantially, especially when 'anchored' poverty lines are used. Substantial changes are observed regarding the structure of poverty. Despite an increase in the population share of households headed by pensioners, their contribution to aggregate poverty declined considerably, with a corresponding increase in the contribution of households headed by unemployed persons. The changes are starker when distribution-sensitive poverty indices are utilized.

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    File URL: http://wpa.deos.aueb.gr/docs/Inequality.and.poverty.in.Greece.pdf
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    Paper provided by Athens University of Economics and Business in its series DEOS Working Papers with number 1705.

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    Date of creation: 05 Sep 2017
    Handle: RePEc:aue:wpaper:1705
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    1. Christos Papatheodorou, 1998. "Inequality in Greece: an analysis by income source," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6594, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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    3. Manos Matsaganis & Chrysa Leventi, 2011. "The distributional impact of the crisis in Greece," DEOS Working Papers 1124, Athens University of Economics and Business.
    4. Shorrocks, A F, 1980. "The Class of Additively Decomposable Inequality Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(3), pages 613-625, April.
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    7. Vassiliki Koutsogeorgopoulou & Manos Matsaganis & Chrysa Leventi & Jan-David Schneider, 2014. "Fairly Sharing the Social Impact of the Crisis in Greece," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1106, OECD Publishing.
    8. Tsakloglou, Panos, 1993. "Aspects of inequality in Greece : Measurement, decomposition and intertemporal change: 1974, 1982," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 53-74, February.
    9. Reinhart, Karmen & Rogoff, Kenneth, 2009. ""This time is different": panorama of eight centuries of financial crises," Economic Policy, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, vol. 1, pages 77-114, March.
    10. Eirini Andriopoulou & Panagiotis Tsakloglou, "undated". "The determinants of poverty transitions in Europe and the role of duration dependence," DEOS Working Papers 1119, Athens University of Economics and Business.
    11. Kaplanoglou, Georgia & Newbery, David Michael, 2003. "Indirect Taxation in Greece: Evaluation and Possible Reform," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 10(5), pages 511-533, September.
    12. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-766, May.
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    14. Christos Papatheodorou, 1998. "Inequality in Greece: An Analysis by Income Source," STICERD - Distributional Analysis Research Programme Papers 39, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
    15. Christopher Heady & Theodore Mitrakos & Panos Tsakloglou, 2001. "The distributional impact of social transfers in the European Union: evidence from the ECHP," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 22(4), pages 547-565., December.
    16. Theodore Mitrakos, 2014. "Inequality, poverty and social welfare in Greece: distributional effects of austerity," Working Papers 174, Bank of Greece.
    17. Mitrakos, T. & Tsakloglou, P., 1997. "An Anatomy of Inequality: Greece 1988," Athens University of Economics and Business 97-07, Athens University of Economics and Business, Department of International and European Economic Studies.
    18. Manos Matsaganis & Chrysa Leventi, 2014. "Poverty and Inequality during the Great Recession in Greece," Political Studies Review, Political Studies Association, vol. 12(2), pages 209-223, 05.
    19. Tsakloglou, Panos, 1990. "Aspects of Poverty in Greece," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 36(4), pages 381-402, December.
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