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Measuring Poverty Using Both Income And Wealth: A Cross-Country Comparison Between The U.S. And Spain

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Executive Summary

In this paper the authors study the correspondence between a household's current income and its vulnerability to income shocks in two developed countries: the U.S. and Spain. Vulnerability is measured by the availability of wealth type resources to smooth consumption in a multidimensional approach to measuring poverty, which allows identifying three groups of households. First, the twice-poor group which includes income-poor households who also lack of an adequate stock of wealth; second, the group of protected-poor households, which are all those income-poor families that have accumulated a buffer stock of wealth resources they can rely on; lastly, the vulnerable-non-poor group, which includes those households above the income poverty line that do not hold any stock of wealth.

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