Inequality and Growth Re-Examined
Jacob Assa
New School for Social Research, New York, USA.
DOI: 10.4236/ti.2012.31001   PDF    HTML     7,291 Downloads   12,290 Views   Citations


This paper examines the relationship between income inequality and subsequent economic growth. It builds on the model suggested by Alesina and Rodrik (1994) in which inequality works through greater demands for redistribution to slow down growth, and the idea by Ray (1998) that inequality negatively affects savings, work capacity, economic incentives, and access to and efficiency of credit and financial markets. Using an updated dataset and seven model variants, both OLS and 2SLS regressions find a strong negative effect of income inequality on future growth. The effect is considerably stronger for developing countries, but the existence or absence of democracy has no effect on either the relationship between inequality and growth or on the rate of growth itself. There is also no support for Barro’s (2008) claim that inequality impacts growth positively in developed countries.

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Assa, J. (2012) Inequality and Growth Re-Examined. Technology and Investment, 3, 1-6. doi: 10.4236/ti.2012.31001.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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