Nº 38 (June, 2006). Leonardo Gasparini, Matías Horenstein & Sergio Olivieri.
“Economic polarisation in Latin America and the Caribbean: what do household surveys tell us?”
This document presents and discusses an extensive set of statistics aimed at characterizing the degree of economic polarisation in the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) countries. The study is based on a dataset of household surveys from 21 LAC countries in the period 1989-2004. Latin America is characterised by a high level of economic polarisation, compared to other regions in the world. On average, income polarisation has mildly increased in the region since the early 1990s. The country experiences in terms of income polarisation, however, have been heterogeneous. The region has moved forward toward the reduction of educational inequalities, while the gaps between the rich and the poor in terms of access to basic services (water and electricity) have been reduced.
JEL Code: I3, D3, D6
A version of this paper was published in Oxford Development Studies, 36 (4), pp. 461-484, December, 2008.