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El Impacto del Sistema Tributario y el Gasto Social en la Distribucion del Ingreso y la Pobreza en America Latina: Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Peru y Uruguay


  • Nora Lustig

    () (Stone Center for Latin American Studies, Department of Economics, Tulane University. Commitment to Equity Institute (CEQI).)


Using standard fiscal incidence analysis, this paper estimates the impact of fiscal policy on inequality and poverty in thirteen countries in Latin America around 2010.Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica and Uruguay are the countries which redistribute the most and El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras redistribute the least. Contributory pensions are significantly equalizing in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay and also in Chile, Costa Rica and Ecuador but, in the latter, their effect is small. In the rest of the countries, contributory pensions are unequalizing but their effect is also small. More unequal countries tend to redistribute more. Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Peru redistribute below the trend; Chile, Ecuador and Mexico are on trend; and, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica and Uruguay redistribute above the trend. Fiscal policy reduces poverty in nine countries. However, in Brazil, Bolivia, Guatemala and Honduras, the incidence of poverty after taxes, subsidies and transfers (excluding spending on education and health) is higher than market income poverty, even though fiscal policy is equalizing. In Brazil and Mexico, a third of the post-fiscal poor were impoverished by fiscal policy and, in Bolivia and Guatemala, two thirds were. Public spending on pre-school and primary education is always equalizing and also pro-poor (i.e., per capita spending falls with per capita income). Spending on secondary education is always equalizing but pro-poor only in some countries. Spending on tertiary education is never pro-poor; however, it is always equalizing except for Guatemala. Government spending on public health is always progressive in relative terms and equalizing. Resumen. Este artículo presenta resultados sobre el impacto de la política fiscal en la desigualdad y la pobreza en trece países de América Latina para alrededor del año 2010. Los países que más redistribuyen son Argentina, Brasil, Chile, Costa Rica y Uruguay, y los que menos, El Salvador, Guatemala y Honduras. Las pensiones contributivas tienen un efecto igualador, de magnitud significativa, en Argentina, Brasil y Uruguay. En Chile, Costa Rica y Ecuador el efecto es igualador pero pequeño. En el resto de los países, el efecto es desigualador pero también pequeño. Estos resultados son importantes porque indican que no se puede afirmar de manera general que las pensiones contributivas en América Latina son regresivas y desigualadoras. Si las pensiones contributivas se consideran un ingreso diferido, el efecto redistributivo es 4.1 puntos porcentuales mayor en la Unión Europea pero 15.4 puntos porcentuales mayor cuando las pensiones contributivas se consideran una transferencia. Los resultados para los trece países latinoamericanos muestran que los países más desiguales tienden a dedicar una proporción mayor del PIB al gasto social y que a mayor gasto social, mayor redistribución. Los países más desiguales también tienden a redistribuir más. Entre los países que redistribuyen por debajo de lo que predice la tendencia, se encuentran Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras y Perú.Chile, Ecuador y México prácticamente se encuentran sobre la línea de tendencia.Argentina, Brasil, Costa Rica y Uruguay lo hacen por encima de la tendencia. Países con un nivel de gasto social similar muestran diferentes niveles de redistribución lo cual sugiere que otros factores tales como la composición y focalización del gasto intervienen en determinar el efecto redistributivo más alla del tamaño. La política fiscal reduce la pobreza extrema en nueve países: Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, México, Perú y Uruguay. Sin embargo, la incidencia de la pobreza después de impuestos, subsidios y transferencias monetarias es mayor que la incidencia para el ingreso de mercado en Bolivia, Brasil, Guatemala y Honduras, aun cuando la política fiscal reduce la desigualdad. Además, aun cuando la incidencia de la pobreza y la desigualdad se reducen, con la nueva medida de Empobrecimiento Fiscal se puede observar que en Brasil y México un tercio y en Bolivia y Guatemala dos tercios de la población pobre medida con el ingreso consumible fue empobrecida: es decir, pasó de pobre a ser más pobre o de no pobre a ser pobre. El gasto en educación pre-escolar y primaria es igualador y pro-pobre en todos los países. El gasto en educación secundaria es igualador en todos los países y también pro-pobre en algunos pero no en todos. El gasto en educación terciaria nunca es pro-pobre pero es igualador a excepción de Guatemala. El gasto en salud siempre es igualador pero es pro-pobre solamente en Argentina, Brasil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador y Uruguay.

Suggested Citation

  • Nora Lustig, 2016. "El Impacto del Sistema Tributario y el Gasto Social en la Distribucion del Ingreso y la Pobreza en America Latina: Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatema," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 37, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:tul:ceqwps:37

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item


    incidencia fiscal; desigualdad; pobreza; impuestos; transferencias; América Latina;

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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