Demographic Trends and Consumption Inequality in Australia 1975-1993
We examine trends in consumption inequality among Australian households using the Australian Bureau of Statistics Household Expenditures Surveys collected over the period 1975 to 1993. We find that consumption is much more equal than income and that both income and consumption inequality rose by significant amounts over the period. However, consumption inequality rose by much less (the Gini coefficient for income inequality rose by 17% while that for nondurable consumption rose by 9%). We then examine the effects of demographic trends, specifically population ageing and changing family structures, and find they account for only a minor fraction in the overall growth in economic inequality.
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