Accounting for Trends in Income Inequality Among the Elderly

노인 소득불평등 추이의 영향요인

  • Received : 2012.08.08
  • Accepted : 2012.10.10
  • Published : 2012.11.30


This study examines recent trends in income inequality among the elderly in Korea. Aggregate income inequality trends are explained by examining evidence from inequality index decomposition by population subgroup and by income source. Data come from Korean Labor and Income Panel Study(KLIPS). The results are as follows. First, elderly income inequality increased from 1999 to 2002, and then decreased until 2008. Second, household composition changes appear to have disequalizing influence. The proportion of elderly people who are economically dependent on non-elderly family member or living with adult children has declined. Equalizing influence of private transfers also decreased between 2002 and 2008. These results indicate that the redistributive role of family has weakened over time. Third, the improvement of education level and changing occupational structure among the elderly household head contributed to increase in elderly income inequality. Fourth, earning's factor share has declined steadily, and the diminishing role of earnings provides equalizing influence on elderly income inequality from 2002 to 2008. Fifth, the impact of recent expansion of social insurance has changed over time. Inequality contribution of social insurance income increased from 1999 to 2002, and then decreased from 2002 to 2008.