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OECD Framework for Statistics on the Distribution of Household Income, Consumption and Wealth

image of OECD Framework for Statistics on the Distribution of Household Income, Consumption and Wealth

This publication presents an internationally agreed framework to support the joint analysis of micro-level statistics on household income, consumption and wealth. Its aim is to extend the existing international frameworks for measuring household income and consumption at the micro level to include wealth, and describes income, consumption and wealth as three separate but interrelated dimensions of people’s economic well-being. The framework, prepared by an international expert group working under the auspices of the OECD, is intended to assist national statistical offices and other data producers to develop data sets at the household level that are suitable for integrated analysis, and for facilitating comparisons between countries. The Framework is widely applicable, with relevance to countries that are at different stages of statistical development, that have different statistical infrastructures, and that operate in different economic and social environments.

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Detailed framework and relationships between elements

As discussed in , income, consumption and wealth statistics comprise data on stocks and flows. Since the flows and stocks in the model balance by definition, the model can be viewed as an accounting framework with an income account, an expenditure account, a capital account, and balance sheets. In order for the accounts to balance, it is essential that the definitions of the various detailed components be consistent between the accounts, and that differences are clearly identified. A high degree of consistency is required when compiling and analysing integrated statistics on household income, consumption and wealth. Breakdowns of aggregates from the various dimensions should use consistent treatments and classifications so that data from one dimension can be related to data from another dimension. For example, data on income from investments should ideally use consistent and comparable breakdowns as wealth data relating to income-earning assets.

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