Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research - Research Publications

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    The dynamics of income poverty in Australia: Evidence from the First Three Waves of the HILDA Survey
    HEADEY, BW ; MARKS, G ; WOODEN, MP (Australia Council of Social Service, 2005)
    This paper reports an analysis of income poverty dynamics in Australia using longitudinal data from the first three waves of the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey. As in other developed countries, far fewer people are found to be living in persistent poverty than are poor on an annual basis. With a poverty threshold set at 50 per cent of median equivalised income, just over four per cent of Australians were measured as being in income poverty in all three waves. Among those who were poor during 2000‐01, about half subsequently had incomes above the 50 per cent threshold. However, the longer people remained in poverty, the less likely they were to exit, the greater was their risk of re‐entering poverty, and the lower were their incomes if they temporarily escaped poverty.
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    Household wealth in Australia: its components, distribution and correlates
    MARKS, G ; HEADEY, BW ; WOODEN, MP (Sage Publications, 2005)
    Using data from the second wave of the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey, conducted in 2002, this article provides information on the composition, distribution and correlates of the wealth holdings of Australian households. The survey results indicate that Australian households have an average net worth (or wealth) of just over A$400,000, comprising assets of $473,000 and debts of $68,000. The largest component of wealth is home equity. The degree of inequality across households in wealth inequality is found to be much larger than the inequality in income and varies substantially with age and, to a lesser extent, with household type and education. Age, socio-economic background, educational attainment, marital status and the number of children can account for about 30 percent of the variation across households in (logged) wealth.