Inequality and the Safety Net Throughout the Income Distribution, 1929-1940

46 Pages Posted: 5 May 2020

See all articles by James Feigenbaum

James Feigenbaum

Boston University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Price V. Fishback

University of Arizona; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Keoka Grayson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: May 2020

Abstract

We explored two measures of inequality that described the full income distribution in cities. One measure is an income gini based on family incomes in 1929 for 33 cities and in 1933 for up to 48 cities in 1933 were spread throughout the country. We also estimated gini coefficients that made use of contract rents for renters and implicit rents for home owners for up to 955 cities throughout the country. We were able to expand to all counties when looking at a top-end inequality measure, the number of taxpayers per family. All three measures varied substantially across the country. We show the correlations between the various measures and also estimate the relationship between the measures and various relief programs developed by governments at all levels during the period.

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Suggested Citation

Feigenbaum, James and Fishback, Price V. and Grayson, Keoka, Inequality and the Safety Net Throughout the Income Distribution, 1929-1940 (May 2020). NBER Working Paper No. w27069, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3592147

James Feigenbaum (Contact Author)

Boston University - Department of Economics ( email )

270 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
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Price V. Fishback

University of Arizona ( email )

Tucson, AZ 85721-0108
United States
520-621-4421 (Phone)
520-621-8450 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Keoka Grayson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

No Address Available

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