Material Deprivation in Europe: Which Expenditures are Curtailed First?
This paper takes a close look at material deprivation in 27 European Union countries. Its main goal is to explore which expenditures individuals/households curtail first when facing economic difficulties. Two methodologies are applied: item response theory, a psychometric method also known as latent trait analysis, and the concept of deprivation sequence which is an extension of the notion of “order of acquisition of durable goods”. Both approaches show similar results when applied to EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions material deprivation data. Overall, the order of curtailment found in the data does not differ substantially between EU Member states. Looking at within country variations, our analysis shows that the order of curtailment of the country as a whole is very similar to that of the various population subgroups.
KeywordsDurable goods EU-SILC European Union Item response theory Material deprivation Order of acquisition
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