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Diskussionspapiere - Hannover Economic Papers (HEP)

Biased Perceptions of Income Inequality and Redistribution

Autor: Carina Engelhardt and Andreas Wagener
Nummer: 526, Feb 2014, pp. 22
JEL-Class: H53, D72, D31

When based on perceived rather than o n objective income distributions, the Meltzer- Richards hypothesis and the POUM hypothesis work quite well empirically: there exists a positive link between perceived inequality or perceived upward mobility and the extent of redistribution in democratic regimes - though such a link does not exist when objective measures of inequality and social mobility are used. These observations highlight that political preferences and choices might depend more on perceptions than on factual data.


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