Question to Doug

Doug Henwood dhenwood at
Tue May 1 07:41:37 PDT 2001

Alexandre Fenelon wrote:

>I was reviewing your posts and your pages on poverty in USA. The poverty
>income in USA is defined as income inferior to U$S 350,00/month for a
>single person. According to you, this is equivalent to the 90th percentile
>of world income. Are those data adjusted for PPP (Purchase parity power?)

They're PPP, and come from World Bank economist Branko Milanovic.

>The criteria in Europe is less than 1/2 of the median income (they use
>median income or mean income?). Is this less than the USA criteria?

The U.S. poverty line is well under 1/2 median income; the U.S. poverty rate would be close to 20% (rather than appx 12%) using the 1/2 median standard. There was an LIS paper that estimated European poverty rates using the U.S. poverty line (at PPP equivalent), and in most cases, their poverty rates (so computed) were under U.S. rates.

>In the Third world we use US$2,00/day (poverty) and US$1,00/day (misery).
>Are those data adjusted for the dollar devaluation that occurs along
>time or are raw data?

I'm pretty sure these are PPP measures.


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