NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Disaggregating the Effect of the Business Cycle on the Distribution of Income

Rebecca M. Blank

NBER Working Paper No. 2397
Issued in October 1987
NBER Program(s):Labor Studies

This paper disaggregates total household income into a complete set of components and studies the comparative cyclicality of these components to economic growth. Comparisons of the relative responsiveness to GNP growth of wages, hours of work, and total labor market income of heads and wives, and transfer income sources of households are made across income, race, sex and age groups. This provides a picture of the channels by which economic growth produces income change. Significant differences in elasticities are found to exist both between different income components and between different population groups for the same components. The narrowing income distribution in times of high growth occurs primarily because of large elasticities on head's labor market income among the poor. Both wages and hours show evidence of cyclicality. The labor market earnings of women -- both wives and household heads -- are far less responsive to growth. Cyclicality in transfer income varies enormously between population groups and by type of transfer.

download in pdf format
   (332 K)

download in djvu format
   (244 K)

email paper

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w2397

Published: Economica, vol. 56, no. 2, pp141-163, May 1989. citation courtesy of

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Blank and Blinder w1567 Macroeconomics, Income Distribution, and Poverty
Barlevy and Tsiddon w10469 Earnings Inequality and the Business Cycle
Blank and shierholz w12494 Exploring Gender Differences in Employment and Wage Trends Among Less-Skilled Workers
Henderson w7358 Marshall's Economies
Reinhart and Rogoff w13882 This Time is Different: A Panoramic View of Eight Centuries of Financial Crises
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Themes
Data
People
About

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us