Poverty estimates based on enumeration from a single point in time form the basis for most country-level analysis of poverty. Cross-country comparisons of poverty, and global counts of the poor, implicitly assume that country-level poverty headcounts are comparable. This paper illustrates that the assumption of comparability is potentially invalid when households are interviewed multiple times throughout the year, as opposed to a single-visit interview. An example from Jordan illustrates how the internationally comparable approach of handling data from repeat visits yields a poverty rate that is 26 per cent greater than the rate that is currently reported as the official estimate.
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