Monday 7 December 2015

Fun Online Poll: which is the best measure of poverty or inequality?

Further to point 6 of Ben Jamin's recent post

Which is the most relevant measure of poverty or inequality:

Total income
Total assets
Total assets excl. value of main residence*
Total income minus tax and housing costs

There's no "other" because we'd just end up with endless permutations.

Vote here.

* The third option might sound a bit weird, but is the basis for many means tested benefits. For example, if you have a low income but £16,000 or more cash/investments, you get no Housing or Council Tax benefit or Pensions Credit (or their localised replacements and I know that the rules are slightly different for each and there's a Pension Credit Savings Credit to mitigate this). But if you have a low income, no savings and live in a £1 million home, you can still claim Council Tax Benefit and Pensions Credit.

To sum up: a tenant with a low income and £16,000 savings can fuck off, he is not considered to be poor. A home-owner with a low income and no savings and a £1 million house is a charity case and gets all the goodies.

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