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The Fall in Income Inequality during COVID-19 in Four European Countries

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  • Andrew E. Clark

    (PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris Sciences et Lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)

  • Conchita d'Ambrosio

    (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])

  • Anthony Lepinteur

    (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])

Abstract

We here use panel data from the COME-HERE survey to track income inequality during COVID-19 in France, Germany, Italy, and Spain. Relative inequality in equivalent household disposable income among individuals changed in a hump-shaped way between January 2020 and January 2021, with an initial rise from January to May 2020 being more than reversed by September 2020. Absolute inequality also fell over this period. Due to the pandemic some households lost more than others, and government compensation schemes were targeted towards the poorest, implying that on average income differences decreased. Generalized Lorenz domination reveals that these distributive changes reduced welfare in Italy.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew E. Clark & Conchita d'Ambrosio & Anthony Lepinteur, 2021. "The Fall in Income Inequality during COVID-19 in Four European Countries," Working Papers halshs-03230629, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-03230629
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://shs.hal.science/halshs-03230629
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    Cited by:

    1. Andrew Clark & Conchita D'Ambrosio & Anthony Lepinteur & Giorgia Menta, 2022. "Pandemic Policy and Individual Income Changes across Europe," Working Papers 600, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
    2. Astarita, Caterina & Alcidi, Cinzia, 2022. "Did the COVID-19 pandemic impact income distribution?," MPRA Paper 113851, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Waldenström, Daniel & Angelov, Nikolay, 2021. "COVID-19 and Income Inequality: Evidence from Monthly Population Registers," Working Paper Series 1396, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
    4. Andrej Cupak & Judita Jurašeková Kucserová & Ján Klacso & Anna Strachotová, 2023. "Household Finance and Consumption Survey 2021: Results from Slovakia," Working and Discussion Papers OP 2/2023, Research Department, National Bank of Slovakia.
    5. Schettino, Francesco & Scicchitano, Sergio & Suppa, Domenico, 2024. "COVID 19 and Wage Polarization: A task based approach," GLO Discussion Paper Series 1398, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    6. Dorn, Florian & Lange, Berit & Braml, Martin & Gstrein, David & Nyirenda, John L.Z. & Vanella, Patrizio & Winter, Joachim & Fuest, Clemens & Krause, Gérard, 2023. "The challenge of estimating the direct and indirect effects of COVID-19 interventions – Toward an integrated economic and epidemiological approach," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 49(C).
    7. Alina CIUREA (MECA), 2022. "Impact of European Union Social Policy during Pandemic on Household Income," Economics and Applied Informatics, "Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, issue 3, pages 117-124.
    8. Narayan,Ambar & Cojocaru,Alexandru & Agrawal,Sarthak & Bundervoet,Tom & Davalos,Maria Eugenia & Garcia,Natalia & Lakner,Christoph & Mahler,Daniel Gerszon & Montalva Talledo,Veronica Sonia & Ten,Andrey, 2022. "COVID-19 and Economic Inequality : Short-Term Impacts with Long-Term Consequences," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9902, The World Bank.
    9. Braband, Carsten & Consiglio, Valentina Sara & Grabka, Markus M. & Hainbach, Natascha & Königs, Sebastian, 2022. "Disparities in Labour Market and Income Trends during the First Year of the COVID-19 Crisis – Evidence from Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 15475, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Giovanni Gallo & Silvia Granato & michele Raitano, 2022. "Heterogeneous effects of the Covid-19 crisis on Italian workers’ incomes: the role played by jobs routinization and teleworkability," Center for the Analysis of Public Policies (CAPP) 0180, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    11. Adermon, Adrian & Laun, Lisa & Lind, Patrik & Olsson, Martin & Sauermann, Jan & Sjögren , Anna, 2022. "Earnings losses and the role of the welfare state during the COVID-19 pandemic: evidence from Sweden," Working Paper Series 2022:20, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    12. Mahler,Daniel Gerszon & Yonzan,Nishant & Lakner,Christoph, 2022. "The Impact of COVID-19 on Global Inequality and Poverty," Policy Research Working Paper Series 10198, The World Bank.
    13. Zimpelmann, Christian & Gaudecker, Hans-Martin von & Holler, Radost & Janys, Lena & Siflinger, Bettina, 2021. "Hours and income dynamics during the Covid-19 pandemic: The case of the Netherlands," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(C).
    14. Sangyup Choi & Jeeyeon Phi, 2022. "Impact of Uncertainty Shocks on Income and Wealth Inequality," Working papers 2022rwp-196, Yonsei University, Yonsei Economics Research Institute.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    COME-HERE; COVID-19; Income Inequality COME-HERE; Income Inequality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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