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Measuring Income Risk


  • Simon Burgess
  • Karen Gardiner
  • Stephen P. Jenkins
  • Carol Propper


We provide a critique of the methods that have been used to derive measures of income risk and draw attention to the importance of demographic factors as a source of income risk. We also propose new measures of the contribution to total income risk of demographic and labour market factors. Empirical evidence supporting our arguments is provided using data from the British Household Survey.

Suggested Citation

  • Simon Burgess & Karen Gardiner & Stephen P. Jenkins & Carol Propper, 2000. "Measuring Income Risk," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 213, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp213

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    1. R. Moffitt & P. Gottschalk, "undated". "Trends in the covariance structure of earnings in the United States: 1969-1987," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1001-93, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
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    5. Stevens, Ann Huff, 1994. "The Dynamics of Poverty Spells: Updating Bane and Ellwood," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 34-37, May.
    6. Richard Blundell & Ian Preston, 1998. "Consumption Inequality and Income Uncertainty," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(2), pages 603-640.
    7. 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.
    8. Susan Dynarski & Jonathan Gruber, 1997. "Can Families Smooth Variable Earnings?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1), pages 229-303.
    9. Miles, David, 1997. "A Household Level Study of the Determinants of Incomes and Consumption," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(440), pages 1-25, January.
    10. Burkhauser, Richard V, et al, 1990. "Economic Burdens of Marital Disruptions: A Comparison of the United States and the Federal Republic of Germany," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 36(4), pages 319-333, December.
    11. Charles R. Nelson & Andrew F. Siegel, 1985. "Parsimoneous Modeling of Yield Curves for U.S. Treasury Bills," NBER Working Papers 1594, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. James Banks & Richard Blundell & Agar Brugiavini, 1995. "Income uncertainty and consumption growth in the UK," IFS Working Papers W95/13, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
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    Cited by:

    1. James Banks & Richard Blundell & James P. Smith, 2003. "Understanding Differences in Household Financial Wealth between the United States and Great Britain," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(2).
    2. Xavi Ramos & Christian Schluter, 2003. "Subjective Income Expectations, Canonical Models and Income Risk," Working Papers wpdea0310, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
    3. Weikard Hans-Peter, 2004. "Poverty Measurement Under Income Risk / Armutsmessung bei Einkommensrisiken," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 224(3), pages 337-350, June.
    4. Patricia Justino & Julie Litchfield, 2003. "Poverty Dynamics in Rural Vietnam: Winners and Losers During Reform," PRUS Working Papers 10, Poverty Research Unit at Sussex, University of Sussex.
    5. Yoko Niimi & Puja Vasudeva Dutta & L. Alan Winters, 2015. "Trade Liberalisation and Poverty Dynamics in Vietnam," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Non-Tariff Barriers, Regionalism and Poverty Essays in Applied International Trade Analysis, chapter 16, pages 333-365 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    6. James Banks & Richard Blundell & James Smith, 2000. "Wealth inequality in the United States and Great Britain," IFS Working Papers W00/20, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    7. Sonia Bhalotra, 2001. "Growth and welfare provisioning: lessons from the English Poor Laws?," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(7), pages 1083-1096.
    8. Statistics Canada, 2005. "Summary Of: The Instability of Family Earnings and Family Income in Canada, 1986 to 1991 and 1996 to 2001," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2005266e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    9. Statistics Canada, 2005. "The Instability of Family Earnings and Family Income in Canada, 1986 to 1991 and 1996 to 2001," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2005265e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    10. Ramos, Xavier & Schluter, Christian, 2006. "Subjective Income Expectations and Income Risk," IZA Discussion Papers 1950, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    11. James Banks & Richard Blundell & James P. Smith, 2001. "Financial Wealth Inequality in the United States and Great Britain," Working Papers 01-01, RAND Corporation.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations


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