IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/pra/mprapa/90448.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The impact of macroeconomic uncertainty on inequality: An empirical study for the UK

Author

Listed:
  • Theophilopoulou, Angeliki

Abstract

The role of economic uncertainty on macroeconomic fluctuations has been studied extensively in the literature. In the aftermath of the financial crisis and in the process of its exit from the EU, the UK is facing high levels of uncertainty on future economic growth, investment, financial markets etc. In this paper we investigate whether macro economic uncertainty affects income, wage and consumption inequality. Our findings suggest that the measures of inequality increase in the aftermath of an uncertainty shock but decrease in the medium to long run, converging to lower levels. Macroeconomic uncertainty appears to account significantly for the variation of income and consumption inequality. Using detailed micro data we decompose households' income to investigate transmission channels where uncertainty shocks affect differently the percentiles of income and consumption distributions. The financial segmentation and portfolio channels appear to play an important role in this heterogeneous response.

Suggested Citation

  • Theophilopoulou, Angeliki, 2018. "The impact of macroeconomic uncertainty on inequality: An empirical study for the UK," MPRA Paper 90448, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:90448
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/90448/1/MPRA_paper_90448.pdf
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. N. Bloom., 2016. "Fluctuations in uncertainty," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 4.
    2. Mumtaz, Haroon & Theophilopoulou, Angeliki, 2017. "The impact of monetary policy on inequality in the UK. An empirical analysis," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 410-423.
    3. James Heckman & Flavio Cunha, 2007. "The Technology of Skill Formation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 31-47, May.
    4. Orazio Attanasio & Luigi Pistaferri, 2014. "Consumption Inequality over the Last Half Century: Some Evidence Using the New PSID Consumption Measure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 122-126, May.
    5. Manfred M. Fischer & Florian Huber & Michael Pfarrhofer, 2018. "The transmission of uncertainty shocks on income inequality: State-level evidence from the United States," Papers 1806.08278, arXiv.org.
    6. Edward Nelson, 2000. "UK monetary policy 1972-97: a guide using Taylor rules," Bank of England working papers 120, Bank of England.
    7. Flavio Cunha & James J. Heckman & Susanne M. Schennach, 2010. "Estimating the Technology of Cognitive and Noncognitive Skill Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(3), pages 883-931, May.
    8. Roine, Jesper & Vlachos, Jonas & Waldenström, Daniel, 2009. "The long-run determinants of inequality: What can we learn from top income data?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(7-8), pages 974-988, August.
    9. Ben S. Bernanke, 1983. "Irreversibility, Uncertainty, and Cyclical Investment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 98(1), pages 85-106.
    10. Alessandri, Piergiorgio & Bottero, Margherita, 2020. "Bank lending in uncertain times," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 128(C).
    11. Fatih Guvenen & Serdar Ozkan & Jae Song, 2014. "The Nature of Countercyclical Income Risk," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 122(3), pages 621-660.
    12. Daron Acemoglu, 1998. "Why Do New Technologies Complement Skills? Directed Technical Change and Wage Inequality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1055-1089.
    13. James S. Cloyne & Paolo Surico, 2017. "Household Debt and the Dynamic Effects of Income Tax Changes," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(1), pages 45-81.
    14. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde & Pablo Guerrón-Quintana & Keith Kuester & Juan Rubio-Ramírez, 2015. "Fiscal Volatility Shocks and Economic Activity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(11), pages 3352-3384, November.
    15. Jonathan Heathcote & Fabrizio Perri & Giovanni L. Violante, 2010. "Unequal We Stand: An Empirical Analysis of Economic Inequality in the United States: 1967-2006," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 13(1), pages 15-51, January.
    16. Kyle Jurado & Sydney C. Ludvigson & Serena Ng, 2015. "Measuring Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(3), pages 1177-1216, March.
    17. repec:oup:restud:v:84:y::i:1:p:45-81. is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Giacomo De Giorgi & Luca Gambetti, 2017. "Business Cycle Fluctuations and the Distribution of Consumption," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 23, pages 19-41, January.
    19. Haroon Mumtaz, 2016. "The Evolving Transmission of Uncertainty Shocks in the United Kingdom," Econometrics, MDPI, vol. 4(1), pages 1-18, March.
    20. Justin van de Ven, 2011. "Expenditure and Disposable Income Trends of UK Households: Evidence from Micro-Data," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 218(1), pages 44-57, October.
    21. Mike Brewer & James Browne & Andrew Hood & Robert Joyce & Luke Sibieta, 2013. "The Short‐ and Medium‐Term Impacts of the Recession on the UK Income Distribution," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 34(2), pages 179-201, June.
    22. Eberly, Janice C, 1994. "Adjustment of Consumers' Durables Stocks: Evidence from Automobile Purchases," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(3), pages 403-436, June.
    23. Kasa, Kenneth & Lei, Xiaowen, 2018. "Risk, uncertainty, and the dynamics of inequality," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 60-78.
    24. Coibion, Olivier & Gorodnichenko, Yuriy & Kueng, Lorenz & Silvia, John, 2017. "Innocent Bystanders? Monetary policy and inequality," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 70-89.
    25. Cristina Arellano & Yan Bai & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2019. "Financial Frictions and Fluctuations in Volatility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 127(5), pages 2049-2103.
    26. Knight, J B & Sabot, R H, 1983. "Educational Expansion and the Kuznets Effect," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(5), pages 1132-1136, December.
    27. Angus Deaton, 2016. "Measuring and Understanding Behavior, Welfare, and Poverty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(6), pages 1221-1243, June.
    28. Brewer, Mike & Wren-Lewis, Liam, 2012. "Accounting for changes in income inequality: decomposition analyses for Great Britain, 1968-2009," ISER Working Paper Series 2012-17, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    29. Nicholas Bloom, 2009. "The Impact of Uncertainty Shocks," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(3), pages 623-685, May.
    30. Forni, Mario & Gambetti, Luca, 2014. "Sufficient information in structural VARs," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 124-136.
    31. Chris Belfield & Richard Blundell & Jonathan Cribb & Andrew Hood & Robert Joyce, 2017. "Two Decades of Income Inequality in Britain: The Role of Wages, Household Earnings and Redistribution," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 84(334), pages 157-179, April.
    32. Andrew Benito, 2006. "Does job insecurity affect household consumption?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 157-181, January.
    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. Fischer, Manfred M. & Huber, Florian & Pfarrhofer, Michael, 2021. "The regional transmission of uncertainty shocks on income inequality in the United States," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 183(C), pages 887-900.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Angeliki Theophilopoulou, 2022. "The impact of macroeconomic uncertainty on inequality: An empirical study for the United Kingdom," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 54(4), pages 859-884, June.
    2. Fischer, Manfred M. & Huber, Florian & Pfarrhofer, Michael, 2021. "The regional transmission of uncertainty shocks on income inequality in the United States," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 183(C), pages 887-900.
    3. N. Bloom., 2016. "Fluctuations in uncertainty," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 4.
    4. Goodness C. Aye & Matthew W. Clance & Rangan Gupta, 2019. "The effectiveness of monetary and fiscal policy shocks on U.S. inequality: the role of uncertainty," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 53(1), pages 283-295, January.
    5. Arbatli Saxegaard, Elif C. & Davis, Steven J. & Ito, Arata & Miake, Naoko, 2022. "Policy uncertainty in Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    6. Al-Thaqeb, Saud Asaad & Algharabali, Barrak Ghanim, 2019. "Economic policy uncertainty: A literature review," The Journal of Economic Asymmetries, Elsevier, vol. 20(C).
    7. Alessandri, Piergiorgio & Mumtaz, Haroon, 2019. "Financial regimes and uncertainty shocks," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 31-46.
    8. Josué Diwambuena & Jean-Paul K. Tsasa, 2021. "The Real Effects of Uncertainty Shocks: New Evidence from Linear and Nonlinear SVAR Models," BEMPS - Bozen Economics & Management Paper Series BEMPS87, Faculty of Economics and Management at the Free University of Bozen.
    9. Daniel Dejuán & Corinna Ghirelli, 2018. "Policy uncertainty and investment in Spain," Working Papers 1848, Banco de España.
    10. Jesus Fernandez-Villaverde & Pablo Guerron-Quintana, 2020. "Uncertainty Shocks and Business Cycle Research," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 37, pages 118-166, August.
    11. Nicholas Bloom & Fatih Guvenen & Sergio Salgado, 2016. "Skewed Business Cycles," 2016 Meeting Papers 1621, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    12. Daniel Dejuan-Bitria & Corinna Ghirelli, 2021. "Economic policy uncertainty and investment in Spain," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 12(3), pages 351-388, September.
    13. Trung, Nguyen Ba, 2019. "The spillover effects of US economic policy uncertainty on the global economy: A global VAR approach," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 90-110.
    14. Saud Asaad Al‐Thaqeb & Barrak Ghanim Algharabali & Khaled Tareq Alabdulghafour, 2022. "The pandemic and economic policy uncertainty," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(3), pages 2784-2794, July.
    15. Manfred M. Fischer & Florian Huber & Michael Pfarrhofer, 2018. "The transmission of uncertainty shocks on income inequality: State-level evidence from the United States," Papers 1806.08278, arXiv.org.
    16. Tarek A Hassan & Stephan Hollander & Laurence van Lent & Ahmed Tahoun, 2019. "Firm-Level Political Risk: Measurement and Effects," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 134(4), pages 2135-2202.
    17. Lorenzo Bretscher & Alex Hsu & Andrea Tamoni, 2019. "Response of the Macroeconomy to Uncertainty Shocks:the Risk Premium Channel," 2019 Meeting Papers 1567, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    18. Wu, Ji & Yao, Yao & Chen, Minghua & Jeon, Bang Nam, 2020. "Economic uncertainty and bank risk: Evidence from emerging economies," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 68(C).
    19. Caggiano, Giovanni & Castelnuovo, Efrem & Delrio, Silvia & Kima, Richard, 2021. "Financial uncertainty and real activity: The good, the bad, and the ugly," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 136(C).
    20. Gabriel P. Mathy, 2020. "How much did uncertainty shocks matter in the Great Depression?," Cliometrica, Springer;Cliometric Society (Association Francaise de Cliométrie), vol. 14(2), pages 283-323, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Macroeconomic uncertainty; income inequality; consumption inequality; SVARs;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • D3 - Microeconomics - - Distribution
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles

    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:pra:mprapa:90448. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/vfmunde.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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Joachim Winter (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/vfmunde.html .

    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.