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Distributional National Accounts (DINA) with Household Survey Data: Methodology and Results for European Countries

Stefan Ederer, Predrag Ćetković, Stefan Humer, Stefan Jestl and Emanuel List

Review of Income and Wealth, 2022, vol. 68, issue 3, 667-688

Abstract: This paper builds Distributional National Accounts (DINA) using household survey data. We develop a transparent and reproducible methodology that uses only publicly available sources, provides highly comparable results well suited for policy analyses, and can be applied when administrative tax data are not available for research. We apply this methodology to build synthetic micro‐datafiles for European countries that cover the entire distribution, include all income components separately, are consistent with national accounts, and preserve the detailed socioeconomic information available in the surveys. We discuss the methodological steps and their impact on the income distribution. In particular, we highlight the effects of imputations and the adjustment of variables to national accounts’ totals. Furthermore, we compare the different income concepts of the DINA and the EG‐DNA approach in a consistent way. Overall, aligning household incomes with national accounts’ totals and imputing incomes from other sectors increases inequality in most countries, which underlines the importance of reconciling income distributions with macroeconomic aggregates.

Date: 2022
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