Using survey data from the International Social Survey Program, we investigate how individual preferences for redistribution and public spending are affected by gender, income and expected future living standard. Applying the concept of the equivalent income, we find that some respondents obtain a higher living standard when living in a multiperson household - due to sharing income within the household - compared to the living standard they could obtain when living as a single. Our results suggest that these individuals may precautionary favor an increase in redistribution and public spending as to insure themselves against the ever present risk of future downward mobility e.g. in case of separation, divorce or widowhood. As on average women obtain a lower income than men, this situation is more likely to apply to women. In that sense our analysis may represent a further step towards understanding the gender gap in preferences for redistributive spending.
gender gap household equivalence scale redistributive preferences