In this paper dierent conditional density estimators are employed to analyze the cross-sectional distribution dynamics of regional per-capita income in Europe during the period 1980-2002. First, a kernel estimator with xed bandwidth (the method traditionally applied in the literature on intra-distribution dynamics) gives evidence of convergence. With a modied estimator, proposed by Hyndman et al. (1996), with variable bandwidth and mean-bias correction, the dominant income dynamics is that of persistence and lack of cohesion: only a fraction of very poor regions improves its position over time converging towards a low relative income (“poverty trap”). Moreover, an alternative graphical technique (more informative than the traditional contour plot) is applied to visualize conditional densities.
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