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Estimating Poverty Persistence in Britain

  • Francesco Devicienti

This paper uses longitudinal data from the BHPS, waves 1-8, to document low-income dynamics and persistence for individuals living in Britain in the 1990s. Poverty exit and re-entry rates are estimated and the resulting distribution of time spent in poverty is calculated, both in single and in multiple-spells frameworks. Poverty persistence predictions are also produced for various subgroups of the populations. To do this, I estimate a multiple-spell model of transitions in and out of poverty, controlling for observed and correlated unobserved individual heterogeneity and for a potential initial condition problem. Components-of-variance models are also used to predict the number of years in poverty for the targeted groups. The two sets of predictions are then compared.

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Paper provided by LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies in its series LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series with number 1.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cca:wplabo:1
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  1. Lorenzo Cappellari & Stephen P. Jenkins, 2008. "The Dynamics of Social Assistance Receipt: Measurement and Modelling Issues, with an Application to Britain," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 67, OECD Publishing.
  2. John M. Abowd & David Card, 1986. "On the Covariance Structure of Earnings and Hours Changes," NBER Working Papers 1832, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Francesco Devicienti, 2001. "Estimating Poverty Persistence in Britain," LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series 1, LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies.
  4. Gottschalk, Peter & Moffitt, Robert A, 1994. "Welfare Dependence: Concepts, Measures, and Trends," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 38-42, May.
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  6. Biewen, Martin, 2002. "The Covariance Structure of East and West German Incomes and its Implications for the Persistence of Poverty and Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 459, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Baker, Michael, 1997. "Growth-Rate Heterogeneity and the Covariance Structure of Life-Cycle Earnings," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 338-75, April.
  8. Lorenzo Cappellari & Stephen P. Jenkins, 2004. "Modelling low income transitions," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(5), pages 593-610.
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  10. Costas Meghir & E. Whitehouse, 1995. "Labour market transitions and retirement of men in the UK," IFS Working Papers W95/10, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  11. Sarah Jarvis & Stephen P. Jenkins, 1997. "Low income dynamics in 1990s Britain," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 18(2), pages 123-142, May.
  12. Ann Huff Stevens, 1995. "Climbing Out of Poverty, Falling Back In: Measuring the Persistence of Poverty over Multiple Spells," NBER Working Papers 5390, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Joseph G. Altonji & Lewis M. Segal, 1994. "Small Sample Bias in GMM Estimation of Covariance Structures," NBER Technical Working Papers 0156, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Fertig, Michael & Tamm, Marcus, 2007. "Always Poor or Never Poor and Nothing in Between? Duration of Child Poverty in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 2645, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  15. Dickens, Richard, 2000. "The Evolution of Individual Male Earnings in Great Britain: 1975-95," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(460), pages 27-49, January.
  16. Bruce D. Meyer, 1988. "Unemployment Insurance And Unemployment Spells," NBER Working Papers 2546, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Francesco Devicienti, 2002. "Poverty persistence in Britain: A multivariate analysis using the BHPS, 1991–1997," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 307-340, December.
  18. MaCurdy, Thomas E., 1982. "The use of time series processes to model the error structure of earnings in a longitudinal data analysis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 83-114, January.
  19. Lillard, Lee A & Willis, Robert J, 1978. "Dynamic Aspects of Earning Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 985-1012, September.
  20. Flinn, Christopher J & Heckman, James J, 1983. "Are Unemployment and Out of the Labor Force Behaviorally Distinct Labor Force States?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(1), pages 28-42, January.
  21. Hansen, Jörgen & Wahlberg, Roger, 2004. "Poverty Persistence in Sweden," CEPR Discussion Papers 4539, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  22. Jenkins, Stephen P, 1995. "Easy Estimation Methods for Discrete-Time Duration Models," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 57(1), pages 129-38, February.
  23. Simon Burgess & Carol Propper, 1998. "An economic model of household income dynamics, with an application to poverty dynamics among American women," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6525, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  24. repec:rwi:dpaper:0056 is not listed on IDEAS
  25. Ham, John C & LaLonde, Robert J, 1996. "The Effect of Sample Selection and Initial Conditions in Duration Models: Evidence from Experimental Data on Training," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(1), pages 175-205, January.
  26. Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
  27. Cappellari, Lorenzo, 2000. "The Covariance Structure of Italian Male Wages," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 68(6), pages 659-84, December.
  28. Ondrich, Jan & Rhody, Stephen E., 1999. "Multiple spells in the Prentice-Gloeckler-Meyer likelihood with unobserved heterogeneity," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 139-144, May.
  29. Olga Canto, 2002. "Climbing out of poverty, falling back in: low income stability in Spain," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(15), pages 1903-1916.
  30. Böheim, René & Taylor, Mark P, 2000. "Unemployment Duration and Exit States in Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers 2500, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  31. Xavier Ramos, 2003. "The Covariance Structure of Earnings in Great Britain, 1991-1999," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 70(278), pages 353-374, 05.
  32. Hansen, Jörgen & Wahlberg, Roger, 2004. "Poverty Persistence in Sweden," IZA Discussion Papers 1209, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  33. Stephen P. Jenkins, 2000. "Modelling household income dynamics," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 529-567.
  34. Lorenzo Cappellari & Stephen P. Jemkins, 2002. "Who Stays Poor? Who Becomes Poor? Evidence from the British Household Panel Survey," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(478), pages C60-C67, March.
  35. Mary Jo Bane & David T. Ellwood, 1986. "Slipping into and out of Poverty: The Dynamics of Spells," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(1), pages 1-23.
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