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Sensitivity of inequality measures to extreme values

Author

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  • Cowell, Frank
  • Flachaire, Emmanuel

Abstract

We examine the sensitivity of estimates and inequality indices to extreme values, in the sense of their robustness properties and of their statistical performance. We establish that these measures are very sensitive to the properties of the income distribution. Estimation and inference can be dramatically affected, especially when the tail of the income distribution is heavy.

Suggested Citation

  • Cowell, Frank & Flachaire, Emmanuel, 2002. "Sensitivity of inequality measures to extreme values," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 2213, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:2213
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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/2213/
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    Cited by:

    1. Davidson, Russell & Flachaire, Emmanuel, 2007. "Asymptotic and bootstrap inference for inequality and poverty measures," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 141(1), pages 141-166, November.
    2. Tae-Hwan Kim & Christophe Muller, 2004. "Two-stage quantile regression when the first stage is based on quantile regression," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 7(1), pages 218-231, June.
    3. Michael McAleer & Hang K. Ryu & Daniel J. Slottje, 2019. "A New Inequality Measure that is Sensitive to Extreme Values and Asymmetries," Advances in Decision Sciences, Asia University, Taiwan, vol. 23(1), pages 31-61, March.
    4. Frank A Cowell & Carlo V. Fiorio, 2006. "Rethinking Inequality Decomposition:Comment," STICERD - Distributional Analysis Research Programme Papers 82, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
    5. Vladimir Hlasny, 2021. "Parametric representation of the top of income distributions: Options, historical evidence, and model selection," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 1217-1256, September.
    6. Frank Bickenbach & Eckhardt Bode, 2008. "Disproportionality Measures of Concentration, Specialization, and Localization," International Regional Science Review, , vol. 31(4), pages 359-388, October.
    7. Stefan Traub & Christian Seidl & Ulrich Schmidt & Maria Levati, 2005. "Friedman, Harsanyi, Rawls, Boulding – or somebody else? An experimental investigation of distributive justice," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 24(2), pages 283-309, April.
    8. Timothy Patrick Moran, 2006. "Statistical Inference for Measures of Inequality With a Cross-National Bootstrap Application," Sociological Methods & Research, , vol. 34(3), pages 296-333, February.
    9. Traub, Stefan & Seidl, Christian & Schmidt, Ulrich & Levati, Maria Vittoria, 2003. "Friedman, Harsanyi, Rawls, Boulding - or Somebody Else?," Economics Working Papers 2003-03, Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel, Department of Economics.
    10. Peter Lindner, 2015. "Factor decomposition of the wealth distribution in the euro area," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 42(2), pages 291-322, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    inequality measures; statistical performance; robustness;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C1 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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