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Avoiding chronic and transitory poverty

  • Haddad, Lawrence James
  • Ahmed, Akhter U.

This paper uses a panel data of 347 households in Egypt to measure changes in household consumption between 1997 and 1999 and to identify causes behind the changes. Per capita consumption decreased for the households during this time and, while not dramatic, it occurred at all points along the distribution. Over the two-year period, the number of households that fell into poverty was over twice as large as the number of households that climbed out of poverty. About two-thirds of overall poverty was chronic (average consumption over time was below the poverty line), and almost half of all poor were always poor. We use quantile regression methods to identify the factors that explain total, chronic, and transitory poverty. While our analysis ably documents the extent of transitory poverty, it does not explain well the determinants of this type of poverty. The predominantly chronic nature of poverty in the sample, and our ability to identify associated characteristics, strengthens the case for targeting antipoverty interventions such as food subsidies.

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Paper provided by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in its series FCND briefs with number 133.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:fpr:fcndbr:133
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  1. Datt, Gaurav & Jolliffe, Dean, 1999. "Determinants of poverty in Egypt, 1997," FCND discussion papers 75, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  2. Julian May & Michael Carter & Lawrence Haddad & John Maluccio, 2000. "KwaZulu-Natal Income Dynamics Study (KIDS) 1993-98: A longitudinal household database for South African policy analysis," Development Southern Africa, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(4), pages 567-581.
  3. Ahmed, Akhter U. & Bouis, Howarth E., 2002. "Weighing what's practical: proxy means tests for targeting food subsidies in Egypt," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(5-6), pages 519-540.
  4. Bob Baulch & John Hoddinott, 2000. "Economic mobility and poverty dynamics in developing countries," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(6), pages 1-24.
  5. Fatma El-Hamidi & Ragui Assaad & Ahmed Akhter, 2000. "The Determinants of Employment Status in Egypt," Working Papers 269, University of Pittsburgh, Department of Economics, revised Sep 2006.
  6. Ravallion, Martin, 1988. "Expected Poverty under Risk-Induced Welfare Variability," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 98(393), pages 1171-82, December.
  7. Neil McCulloch & Bob Baulch, 2000. "Simulating the impact of policy upon chronic and transitory poverty in rural Pakistan," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(6), pages 100-130.
  8. Datt, Gaurav & Jolliffe, Dean, 1999. "Determinants of Poverty in Egypt," FCND briefs 2, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  9. Datt, Gaurav & Jolliffe, Dean & Sharma, Manohar, 1998. "A profile of poverty in Egypt: 1997," FCND discussion papers 49, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  10. Stefan Dercon & Pramila Krishnan, 2000. "Vulnerability, seasonality and poverty in Ethiopia," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(6), pages 25-53.
  11. Bouis, Howarth E., 1994. "Agricultural technology and food policy to combat iron deficiency in developing countries," FCND discussion papers 1, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  12. Adams, Richard H., Jr, 1999. "Nonfarm income, inequality, and land in Rural Egypt," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2178, The World Bank.
  13. Jyotsna Jalan & Martin Ravallion, 2000. "Is transient poverty different? Evidence for rural China," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(6), pages 82-99.
  14. Neil McCulloch & Bob Baulch, 2000. "Simulating the Impact of Policy upon Chronic and Transitory Poverty in Rural Pakistan," Econometrics 0004003, EconWPA.
  15. Morduch, Jonathan, 1999. "Between the State and the Market: Can Informal Insurance Patch the Safety Net?," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 14(2), pages 187-207, August.
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