Economics at your fingertips  

Who pays the price of folly? The business cycle and income and wealth mobility in Spain

Clara Martinez-Toledano, David Law, David Haugh and Muge Adalet

No 1561, OECD Economics Department Working Papers from OECD Publishing

Abstract: Spain has experienced a dramatic business cycle, starting with a large construction based boom followed by a long recession, resulting in a substantial rise in unemployment, and income and wealth inequality. This paper uses longitudinal data from the Survey of Household Finances over the period 2002 to 2014 to examine the distributions of income and wealth in Spain, as well as the mobility of households within those distributions. Results show an increase in the concentration of both income and wealth following the sharp decline in house prices that occurred since 2008, with house price fluctuations affecting more negatively the young than the old. Furthermore, differences in average income and wealth by education, gender and home ownership status were accentuated during the crisis, with lower and middle group incomes falling on average and top group incomes rising. In addition, higher levels of mobility within the middle of the household wealth distribution are observed than at either the top or bottom, although mobility at the extremes of the distribution increased after 2008. Finally, a number of characteristics of households, including age, property ownership, being employed on a permanent contract and good health, are found to be positively associated with wealth accumulation over time, while having a mortgage is negatively related. Overall, the paper finds it is the young and those with low income, wealth and education, bad health, temporary contracts and a mortgage that became relatively worse off in Spain’s early 21st century boom and bust cycle. This Working Paper relates to the 2018 OECD Economic Survey of Spain (

Keywords: housing market; income; inequality; mobility; Spain; wealth (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D31 E21 N3 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019-07-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur and nep-mac
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link) (text/html)

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link:

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in OECD Economics Department Working Papers from OECD Publishing Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

Page updated 2023-06-15
Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:1561-en