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Relative and absolute poverty : the case of México, 1992-2004

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  • Ruiz-Castillo, Javier

Abstract

This paper advocates that although an absolute notion of poverty should remain an essential ingredient in the evaluation of the standard of living in developing and transition economies, it is time that relative poverty begins to be systematically estimated for those same economies. This prescription is applied to México for the 1992-2004 period, where the Fox Administration has fixed for the first time an absolute poverty line for 2000. To facilitate comparisons with developed countries, the relative poverty line is fixed at 50% of mean equivalent expenditures. Absolute and relative poverty behave in opposite ways during the 1992-2000 business cycle, but both decline significantly during the 2000-04 stagnation period. Relative poverty is above absolute poverty from 1992 to 1994, below it during 1996-98, and above it again in 2000-04. In any case, relative poverty in México is well above relative poverty in developed countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Ruiz-Castillo, Javier, 2005. "Relative and absolute poverty : the case of México, 1992-2004," UC3M Working papers. Economics we061103, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:werepe:we061103
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