How immigration benefits natives despite labour market imperfections and income redistribution

Michele Battisti, Gabriel Felbermayr, Giovanni Peri, Panu Poutvaara 08 August 2014

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A fierce policy debate with little insight from economists

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Topics:  Labour markets Migration

Tags:  Labour Markets, unemployment, wages, immigration, redistribution, welfare, Skill Complementarities

Pension reform and equity

Benedict Clements, Csaba Feher, Sanjeev Gupta 17 July 2014

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Pension reform remains a critical fiscal policy challenge for advanced and emerging market economies. Despite reform efforts in these economies – which have focused on raising retirement ages and reducing benefits – spending is expected to rise as a share of GDP over the medium-term (EC 2012, Merola and Sutherland 2013). But pension reforms, to be politically acceptable, must also be perceived as fair. This column examines key equity challenges in the design of pension reforms, drawing on a new book published by the IMF (Clements, Eich, and Gupta 2014).

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Topics:  Poverty and income inequality

Tags:  redistribution, fiscal policy

How to address inequality

Jeffrey Frankel 29 April 2014

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Inequality has received a lot of attention lately, particularly in two arenas where it had not previously received as much: American public debate and the International Monetary Fund. A major driver is the observation in the US that income inequality has now returned to the extreme levels of the Gilded Age (Piketty 2014).

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Topics:  Politics and economics Poverty and income inequality

Tags:  US, Inequality, redistribution, voting, Political Economy

Taxing, spending, and inequality – what is to be done?

Benedict Clements, David Coady, Ruud de Mooij, Sanjeev Gupta 15 April 2014

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The causes and consequences of rising inequality have attracted considerable attention, including the recent study by Thomas Piketty (2014). This has also touched off a lively debate on the appropriate policy response to rising disparities in income and wealth (Mankiw 2013, Berg, Ostry, and Tsangarides 2014). But this is just one of the many challenges facing ministers of finance – reducing public debt ratios and raising growth are also priorities. So what’s a minister to do?

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Topics:  Poverty and income inequality Taxation

Tags:  income inequality, redistribution, fiscal policy

Redistribution, inequality, and sustainable growth: Reconsidering the evidence

Jonathan D Ostry, Andrew Berg, Charalambos Tsangarides 06 March 2014

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Rising income inequality looms high on the global policy agenda, reflecting not only fears of its pernicious social and political effects (including questions about the consistency of extreme inequality with democratic governance), but also its economic implications.

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Topics:  Development Poverty and income inequality

Tags:  growth, Inequality, redistribution

Can democracy help with inequality?

Daron Acemoglu, Suresh Naidu, Pascual Restrepo, James A Robinson 07 February 2014

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There is a great deal of concern at the moment about the consequences of rising levels of inequality in North America and Western Europe. Will this lead to an oligarchisation of the political system, and imperil political and social stability? Many find such dynamics puzzling given that it is happening in democratic countries. In democratic societies, there ought to be political mechanisms that can inhibit or reverse large rises in inequality, most likely through the fiscal system.

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Topics:  Politics and economics Poverty and income inequality

Tags:  democracy, Inequality, redistribution, Median Voter, Director’s Law

Preferences for redistribution: The crisis, reduced inequality, and soak-the-rich populism

Alberto Alesina, Paola Giuliano 23 April 2009

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The current financial crisis will reduce income and wealth inequality. The rich who heavily invested in financial and stock markets have lost much more than the less wealthy. The relatively poor “young” may face the sale of the century. Go and tell a young (and poor) just-married couple that the collapse of housing prices is a problem; mention to a young worker just beginning to accumulate retirement money that low stock prices are a problem!

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Topics:  Poverty and income inequality

Tags:  redistribution, financial crisis, US inequalities, populism

Finance, redistribution, globalisation

Giuseppe Bertola, Anna Lo Prete 03 December 2008

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The current global financial crisis highlights the vexed issues of what role national governments should and do play in an internationally integrated economic system. In Dani Rodrik’s (1998) classic analysis of data from the 1960s to the early 1990s, openness to international trade was found to be associated with a larger share of government in GDP.

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Topics:  Global economy

Tags:  globalisation, financial markets, redistribution

Spend it like Beckham? Inequality and redistribution in the UK, 1983-2004

Andreas Georgiadis, Alan Manning 05 January 2008

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"I warn you that there are going to be howls of anguish from those rich enough to pay over 75% on their last slice of earnings", a gleeful Denis Healey, Labour Party Shadow Chancellor, 1973.

"The justice for me is concentrated on lifting incomes of those that don't have a decent income. It's not my burning ambition to make sure that David Beckham earns less money", Tony Blair, Labour Party Leader, 2001 Election Campaign.

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Topics:  Poverty and income inequality Taxation

Tags:  Inequality, redistribution, taxation

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