IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/fip/fedpwp/07-13.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

A comparison of poverty trends and policy impacts for working families using different poverty indexes

Author

Listed:
  • Robert H. DeFina

Abstract

This study provides empirical evidence on recent trends in poverty among working families based on the headcount rate and a broader alternative that incorporates the headcount rate, the depth of poverty, and income inequality among the poor. Estimates reveal that the indexes produce significantly different trends. The headcount rate indicates a reduction in overall working poverty for the sample period, while the alternative index showed no statistically significant change. The same result was found for various population subgroups. Decompositions of the index changes show that tax changes contributed to lower values for both the headcount rate and the alternative index, largely due to recent expansions of the earned income tax credit. Changes in transfer payments added to measured poverty, mirroring the retrenchment of welfare and other transfer programs. Shifts in market-based income decreased both indexes.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert H. DeFina, 2007. "A comparison of poverty trends and policy impacts for working families using different poverty indexes," Working Papers 07-13, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:07-13
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.philadelphiafed.org/research-and-data/publications/working-papers/2007/wp07-13.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Moffitt, Robert, 1992. "Incentive Effects of the U.S. Welfare System: A Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(1), pages 1-61, March.
    2. George J. Borjas, 1995. "The Economic Benefits from Immigration," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 3-22, Spring.
    3. Robert K. Triest, 1998. "Has Poverty Gotten Worse?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(1), pages 97-114, Winter.
    4. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-766, May.
    5. Brown, Charles, 1999. "Minimum wages, employment, and the distribution of income," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 32, pages 2101-2163 Elsevier.
    6. Bishop, John A & Chow, K Victor & Zheng, Buhong, 1995. "Statistical Inference and Decomposable Poverty Measures," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(4), pages 329-340, October.
    7. Nada Eissa & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 1996. "Labor Supply Response to the Earned Income Tax Credit," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(2), pages 605-637.
    8. Zheng, Buhong, 1997. " Aggregate Poverty Measures," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(2), pages 123-162, June.
    9. Kakwani, Nanak, 1993. "Statistical Inference in the Measurement of Poverty," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(4), pages 632-639, November.
    10. Card, David, 2001. "Immigrant Inflows, Native Outflows, and the Local Labor Market Impacts of Higher Immigration," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(1), pages 22-64, January.
    11. Foster, James E & Shorrocks, Anthony F, 1991. "Subgroup Consistent Poverty Indices," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 687-709, May.
    12. Lars Osberg & Kuan Xu, 2000. "International Comparisons of Poverty Intensity: Index Decomposition and Bootstrap Inference," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 35(1), pages 51-81.
    13. John Bishop & John Formby & Buhong Zheng, 1999. "Distribution Sensitive Measures of Poverty in the United States," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 57(3), pages 306-343.
    14. Rebecca M. Blank, 2002. "Evaluating Welfare Reform in the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1105-1166, December.
    15. Card, David, 1996. "The Effect of Unions on the Structure of Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 957-979, July.
    16. John L. Rodgers & Joan R. Rodgers, 1991. "Measuring the Intensity of Poverty among Subpopulations: Applications to the United States," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 338-361.
    17. Sen, Amartya K, 1976. "Poverty: An Ordinal Approach to Measurement," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(2), pages 219-231, March.
    18. Lane Kenworthy, 1998. "Do Social-Welfare Policies Reduce Poverty? A Cross-National Assessment," LIS Working papers 188, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. David Brady & Jennifer Moren Cross & Andrew Fullerton, 2010. "More than Just Nickels and Dimes: A Cross-National Analysis of Working Poverty in Affluent Democracies," LIS Working papers 545, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Poverty;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:07-13. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Beth Paul). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/frbphus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.