On the Welfare Gains of Growth and Welfare Costs of Inequality
This note extends Lucas' (1987) analysis to assess welfare gains of economic growth and welfare costs of consumption inequality, both within and across countries. We find that the welfare costs of inequality are significantly larger than the gains of economic growth. While the gains of economic growth are equivalent to a permanent increase of 26\% in per-capita consumption, the costs of within-country and cross-country inequality are equivalent to a permanent reduction in per-capita consumption of 45% and 90% respectively. A benevolent planner would accept a negative growth rate of 1% (instead of the baseline positive rate of 2.1%) in exchange for the elimination of all within-country inequality. The gains of economic growth are equivalent to those of reducing within-country inequality by approximately 1/3.
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Robert E. Hall, 1981.
"Intertemporal Substitution in Consumption,"
NBER Working Papers
0720, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Dirk Krueger & Fabrizio Perri, 2002.
"Does Income Inequality Lead to Consumption Inequality? Evidence and Theory,"
NBER Working Papers
9202, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Krueger, Dirk & Perri, Fabrizio, 2005. "Does income inequality lead to consumption inequality? Evidence and theory," CFS Working Paper Series 2005/15, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
- Dirk Krueger & Fabrizio Perri, 2005. "Does income inequality lead to consumption equality? evidence and theory," Staff Report 363, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Dirk Kreuger & Fabrizio Perri, 2002. "Does Income Inequality Lead to Consumption Inequality? Evidence and Theory," Working Papers 02-15, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
- Thomas Tallarini, .
"Risk-Sensitive Real Business Cycles,"
GSIA Working Papers
1997-35, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
- Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2001.
"The disturbing 'rise' of global income inequality,"
Economics Working Papers
616, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 2002.
- Beaudry, Paul & Pages, Carmen, 2001. "The cost of business cycles and the stabilization value of unemployment insurance," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(8), pages 1545-1572, August.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpma:0507016. 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: (EconWPA)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.