Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Lustig's Inequality Study Referenced in Financial Times Editorial

July 19th, 2010

Tulane’s Samuel Z. Stone Professor of Latin American Economics, Nora Lustig, recently published Declining Inequality in Latin America: A Decade of Progress? along with co-editor Luis F. López-Calva. On Monday, July 19, that work was referenced in the editorial page of The Financial Times in a piece entitled “Uneven economies: Some rare good news from world’s most unequal continent.” The editorial looks to understand what has caused the drop in inequality throughout diverse locations in Latin America, while the same trend has not been seen in other areas of the world such as India and China.

The full-text article is available to Tulane affiliates and can be accessed through the library website or can be accessed by on-line subscription to the Financial Times.

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A recent review of Lustig’s book in Foreign Affairs, a Council of Foreign Relations publication:

Latin America is infamous for its yawning gaps between the very rich and the very poor. It is big news, therefore, that this deeply entrenched disgrace is showing signs of reversal. Over the last decade, according to the number-crunching economists assembled in this book, inequality measurably declined in 12 of 17 countries. The volume attributes this to two factors: the massive expansion of elementary schooling during the past decades, which narrowed the earnings gap between high-skilled and low-skilled workers, and carefully targeted government programs that transferred cash to the poor. (Democratization has helped, too.) The persistence of this redistributive momentum will depend, the editors contend, on progressive tax reforms. This is an important, evidence-rich study that directly challenges the notion that globalization inevitably widens income gaps in developing nations. Foreign Affairs, 2010

See more information on Declining Inequality in Latin America.