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I recall a study that concluded the risk of falling into poverty / homelessness increases dramatically after experiencing 5 (or 7?) traumatic life events, such as

  • Death of a loved one
  • Abandonment by spouse
  • Bankruptcy
  • Being fired
  • Foreclosure

etc (a threshold effect). That's about as clear a memory as I can form, and search engines don't help. Anybody know about this study? It might have been from New Zealand.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for editing the title... But it's a threshold effect. There are several studies on "efects of life events on poverty etc" but this documented a significant rise above a threshold. That's why I compared it to "3 strikes and you're out" $\endgroup$ – Anul Dec 17 '14 at 7:11
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This effect was identified in a report by the New Zealand Ministry of Social Development (Jensen et al., 2006). It specifically indicated that individuals experiencing eight or more "life shocks" (negative life events) experienced significantly more negative socioeconomic outcomes.

This effect is referenced on Wikipedia's Cycle of Poverty page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cycle_of_poverty), which links to a news story on the report (Berry, 2006) and the report itself.

A summary of the report's findings were later published in an academic journal (Jensen et al., 2007).

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you! I spent quite a bit of time looking for it, but I couldn't remember where I saw it and Google searches where turning up different things. $\endgroup$ – Anul May 5 '15 at 12:49

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