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Frontiers of Economics in China

ISSN 1673-3444

ISSN 1673-3568(Online)

CN 11-5744/F

Postal Subscription Code 80-978

Front. Econ. China    2010, Vol. 5 Issue (1) : 114-134
Research articles |
Income Distribution Dynamics of Urban Residents: The Case of China (1995–2004)
Hao Zhou1, Wei Zou 2,
1.Institute of Industrial Economics, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China; 2.School of Economics and Management, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China;
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Abstract Using a 1995–2004 panel data of Chinese urban residents, we investigate the dynamics of income distribution in cities. According to Kernel estimates of the relative income distribution of Chinese cities, we find that: (1) the national across-city distribution of per capita GDP exhibits an apparent unique-peak distribution in 1995 and an “emerging multiple-peak” one in 2004; (2) for prefecture-level cities, income distribution has evolved to an “apparent multiple-peak” distribution from a unique-peak one; (3) the income distribution of county-level cities maintains a unique-peak curve; (4) most of the income dynamics of urban residents originates from prefecture-and-higher-level cities. We sample three representative provinces and study the urban income dynamics respectively. The analysis suggests that within a single province, urban income distribution evolves from unique-peak to twin-peak curve; while among provinces, income convergence is evident for urban residents. In addition, we measure the incidence of poverty in cities based on our income dynamics analysis, and find that the ratios of people living below absolute poverty line have been decreasing at cities of all levels.
Keywords dynamics of income distribution      kernel density estimation      urban poverty      
Issue Date: 05 March 2010
 Cite this article:   
Hao Zhou,Wei Zou. Income Distribution Dynamics of Urban Residents: The Case of China (1995–2004)[J]. Front. Econ. China, 2010, 5(1): 114-134.
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