Oxford Bulletin of Economics & Statistics

Published by Wiley
Online ISSN: 1468-0084
Print ISSN: 0305-9049
The statistical basis of Winegarden's conclusions, i.e., that an egalitarian redistribution of incomes in a typical low-income country would cause a substantial increase in fertility, was examined in detail in that it casts doubt about the validity of all previous econometric studies based on international cross-sectional data. Winegarden's model is reproduced as are his findings. The reexamination of Winegarden's (1984) findings revealed 3 areas which suggest that his conclusions may require modification. In regard to family planning, Winegarden's results indicated that the introduction of a state-supported family planning program would cause a large decline in natality after about a decade. A much weaker relationship emerged when the fertility equation was recomputed using a more appropriate economic method. Further, the results were highly sensitive to changes in the threshold year used to classify countries with regard to family planning programs. It is argued that a qualitative index devised by Mauldin and Berelson (1978) provides a more reliable way to measure the effects of such programs than the binary variable Winegarden used. The use of this index fundamentally altered the findings regarding economic growth and income distribution. According to Winegarden's calculations, faster economic growth would have a pronatal impact in the more economically advanced nations yet help to reduce fertility for those countries in the early stages of development. In contrast, it was found that variations in the rate of economic growth had no discernible impact on natality. Winegarden's results suggested that an egalitarian redistribution of incomes would cause substantial increase in fertility in a typical low-income country, but it was found here that these distributional effects would be fairly modest over a wide range of incomes. Consequently, it appears that any concern about the demographic effects of greater equality in less-developed countries is not well-founded. The potential for reducing natality in the richer nations by means of income redistribution may be overstated by Winegarden's results.
PIP An attempt is made to identify the effects on fertility and mean expectation of life of varying rates of growth in aggregate income and of changes in the income share of the poorer segments of the population. The extent to which these effects vary among developing countries with different levels of mean income is also considered. An econometric model is developed to estimate the direction and strength of the structural relationships among the key variables, and simulation methods are used to predict the final demographic effects of altering either the growth rate or the size distribution of income. The results suggest that there is no general justification for income redistribution as a means of slowing rates of population growth in a developing country. It may be relevant in the more advanced developing countries, but even in those, more direct means (such as family planning programs, education, and health services) may be more effective. This is a revised version of a paper originally presented at the 1983 Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America (see Population Index, Vol. 49, No. 3, Fall 1983, p. 356).
"Various hypotheses have been put forward in recent years concerning the contribution of human capital to economic growth. This paper argues that school enrolment rates--by far the most commonly used human capital measure in growth regressions attempting to test these hypotheses--conflate human capital stock and accumulation effects and lead to misinterpretations of the role of labour force growth. An alternative education-related human capital measure is constructed which is capable of distinguishing between stocks and flows. Applying this measure to samples of developed and less developed countries during the 1960-85 period suggests not only that there are important growth effects associated both with 'initial' stocks of, and subsequent growth in, human capital, but also that this new measure out-performs the simple school enrolment rates used in previous analyses."
It is widely recognized that women in developing countries have dual roles as generators of household income and as primary caregivers to their children. Many policies directed at reducing poverty or malnutrition involve one or the other of these roles. Programs to reduce child malnutrition, for example, typically target mothers as caregivers. However, because of the time constraints women face, there are potential conflicts between women's different activities about which policy makers are rarely informed. Nutrition interventions have not usually considered the barriers to participation in such programs facing mothers who, either by choice or necessity, have entered the labour force (Leslie, 1988; Engle, 1994). Similarly, policies directed at improving female employment opportunities typically ignore women's important role in household activities related to children's healthy development. In this paper we address a potentially important implication of women's multiple roles and the time constraints they face: that female labour force participation, by reducing the time available for household activities related to child development, may place young children at nutritional risk.
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PIP Economists applied data from 1949-1950 and 1980-1981 to a new dynamic model to examine the dynamics of determinants of agricultural wages in Bangladesh, particularly the effect of changes in relative prices of rice (the staple food) and productivity. Just a 20% rise in the price or rice was passed on in the agricultural wage rate within the current year. About 50% was passed on in the long run, however. Therefore an increase in the price of rice reduced the rice purchasing power of agricultural wages in the short and long term. In fact, the importance given to rice in the long run real wage rate was almost the same as the mean proportion of expenditure that an agricultural laborer in Bangladesh committed to rice and closely related food staples. Thus arise in the price of rice in comparison to other goods had limited effects on the long run real wage in terms of the bundle of goods typically consumed, but very adverse effects in the short run placing a high burden on the rural poor. On the other hand, the long run real wage rate fell considerably between the mid 1960s-early 1980s when overall agricultural productivity increased. The economists pointed out that this increased productivity may not have lowered long run real wage rates, but instead mitigating factors may have contributed to this fall. For example, population growth, rising landlessness, and insufficient economic growth in nonagricultural sectors resulted in a consistent growth in the labor supply. In conclusion, this new dynamic model showed that Bangladesh cannot depend only on agricultural growth to reduce the poverty of farmers.
PIP Women's increasing participation in the labor force since the 1950s demands that knowledge about their labor supply needs to keep pace with the changing world. One important change has occurred among mothers of small children, they are increasingly working for pay in successive generations, as the break in their employment has become increasingly shorter. Legislation was enacted in the UK to outlaw unequal pay and discrimination in employment on the basis of gender, while statutory maternity leave was introduced in 1976 and extended in 1986. The proportion of mothers taking maternity leave has since increased, as has full-time employment among mothers. The authors examine the transitions into and out of paid work which women make after childbirth, helping to determine whether recent generations of mothers have benefitted from the policy changes, whether all have benefitted equally, and whether any effects persist beyond the period around the first childbirth. Study data are drawn from the fifth sweep of the National Child Development Study (NCDS) 1958 birth cohort at age 33. The experiences of mothers in the 1958 generation suggests that women have begun to benefit from the equal opportunities provisions enacted in Britain during the 1970s. The age of the youngest child is the most important determinant of women's participation over the preschool years, and relatively better educated women have the highest degree of continuity in employment across childbirth.
Recent research has shown strong support for the model of reproductive behavior derived from the new home economics, and it is shown in this discussion that the evidence from the Federal Republic of Germany is consistent with the new home economics model. There is little support for Easterlin's relative economic hypothesis, but there is limited endorsement for model which adds the influence of experience based material aspirations to the new home economics model. Easterlin's relative income model is reviewed before directing attention to the new home economics model and an explanation of fertility movements in West Germany. The new home economics model focuses on the family division of labor between home activities and work outside the home. The marked decline in German fertility during the 1970s is mostly attributable to factors such as expanding women's earning capacities which increased the importance of 2 earner families, who have a different family division of labor and possibly preferences biased towards "quality" of children rather than numbers. Also, real wage growth lagged behind the growth in experience based aspirations, and this drop in relative income is more dramatic if it is presumed that material aspirations are based upon the family's income experienced by a young adult during his/her adolescence, rather than just the father's earnings. The mother's contribution to family income will contribute to her family's actual standard of living and the desired standard of living of her children. The labor force participation rates of married, middle-aged German women increased markedly during the 1st half of the 1950s, thus tending to enhance the increase in the standard of living desired by the young adults reaching marrying and childbearing ages in the mid-1960s. The analysis indicates that if there is not a substantial reduction in the proportion of young married women in the labor force, fertility will move countercyclically. In that there must be some floor to fertility, one should be cautious of using these parameter estimates considerably outside the 1950-1977 period. Nonetheless, the estimates indicate that economic growth will not bring a substantial rise in German fertility, and, outside the unlikely situation of sustained economic decline, fertility will remain low.
The importance of family considerations in mobility decisions of rural to urban migrants in India was investigated by analyzing evidence on urban rural ties. The empirical basis was a survey of migrant heads of households in Delhi conducted from October 1975 to April 1976. Only 14% of the migrants in the sample were accompanied by family members when they moved to Delhi, and at the time of the survey 44% of the sample were living on their own as nonfamilial households. 82% of the migrants reported having family members living in the area. In 1/3 of these cases the rural household contained the wife of the migrant. Over 3/4 of the sample visited their origin regularly, and 2/3 were sending money. Migration decisions are discussed in the context of the mutlicentered family, and urban rural family links are classified into several distinct types, and the importance of visits and remittances to origin for each of these types are investigated. An econometric analysis of conjugal separation is presented, and the determinants of remittances are investigated. The salient methodological innovations are a 7-part typology of urban rural familial links and the use of logit analysis in the identification of the important determinants of conjugal separation. Nearly 4/5 of the migrants visited their place of origin. The proportion reporting visits was higher for migrants who had family members at place of origin, but as many as 60% of the migrants not having family links maintained contact with rural residents through visits. If migrants recognized mutual kinship rights and obligations dictated by the social system, they maintained close functional ties with their kin. Only 56% of unmarried migrants living as nonfamilial units reported visits to origin compared to 92% of those living with their nuclear unit. For migrants who reported presence of family members at origin, there was no significant difference between landowners and nonlandowners in the proportion who reported visits. Married migrants who had left their wives in the rural area were more likely to visit origin during the agricultural busy periods. A majority of the migrants maintained economic links with the rural area, and in early all these cases financial flows were from the urban to the rural area. Remittances tended to be related positively to urban earnings and needs of the rural household and negatively to obligations in the urban household. There was no evidence of ties weakening over time, but migrants who planned to settle in the city remitted less. To an extent conjugal separation was temporary and reflected husbands and wives making the journey at different times. Migrants were also inhibited from bringing their wives to the city if they owned land at origin or had migrated to obtain cash for specific needs. A part of the explanation also lies in varying regional cultural and environmental characteristics.
PIP This article analyzes the earnings penalty of non-participation faced by women who withdraw occasionally from the labor force in Canada. The Canadian Fertility Survey (CFS) was used for the econometric analysis based on labor market events taking place in the late 1970s or early 1980s. The CFS is a retrospective survey of the labor market and the fertility history of 5000 Canadian women. The result of the analysis is that labor market interruptions are typically longer when explained by fertility. The distribution of time from entrance until the first interruption and the duration of the interruption reveal the importance of heterogeneity. The more educated women, in particular, return to work much faster but do not seem to work longer (before interrupting) than other women do. The earning analysis revealed that, when potential endogeneity is ignored, there exist a negative relationship between interruption duration and female earnings. Furthermore, all things being equal, women who interrupt for fertility have higher earnings than women who interrupt for other reasons, probably because interruption was driven by fertility which is considered a necessity for a large number of women.
An urban migration function for Tanzania, where there is a significant level of urban unemployment and an urban sector where wages are downwardly inflexible, is calculated. A conceptual framework is explained in which migrants respond to differences in expected incomes in labor markets where jobs are rationed by means other than the price mechanism. Analysis supports the hypothesis that expected income has a significant influence on the decision of Tanzanian rural residents to migrate to town. It is estimated that a 10 percent decline in urban real wages, accomplished either by lowering money wages or holding them constant while prices rise, induces a 7 to 20 percent decrease in the migration rate. There was a higher propensity to migrate among educated rural residents. The results provide an empirical basis for the new class of models that view urban unemployment as a phenomenon resulting from an inter-sectoral misallocation of labor. It is suggested that narrowing the gap between rural and urban real incomes is a potentially effective means of reducing urban labor market imbalance.
PIP An analysis of temporary migration in India is presented. In particular, the author examines, within a multivariate context, the importance of various socioeconomic factors that influence the future plans of rural-urban migrants and their intended timing of return to the rural area. The data are from a 1975-1976 survey of 1,615 migrant heads of households in Delhi.
"We show that older [UK] male pensioners have substantially lower incomes than younger pensioners.... We find that cohort differences more than account for the lower incomes of older pensioners in the sense that the mean income of older pensioners is actually higher than the mean income of the same cohort of pensioners when they were younger. We explore a number of possible reasons for this and conclude that it is driven by differential mortality between richer and poorer pensioners. We show how this manifests itself in a long time series of cross-sectional datasets."
This paper proposes two new panel unit root tests based on Zaykin et al. (2002)'s truncated product method. The first one assumes constant correlation between p-values and the second one uses sieve bootstrap to allow for general forms of cross-section dependence in the panel units. Monte Carlo simulation shows that both tests have reasonably good size and are powerful in cases of some very large p-values. The proposed tests are applied to a panel of real GDP and inflation density forecasts, resulting in evidence that professional forecasters may not update their forecast precision in an optimal Bayesian way.
This paper reexamines the demand for money in the United Kingdom in the pre-1914 period. The performance of alternative income, interest-rate, and money-stock data is compar ed. The preferred equation relates the real demand for money to incom e, the own rate of return on money, the short-term bill rate, and the yield on consols. This model encompasses previous specifications by having smaller residual variance and by providing a broader menu of r elevant asset yields in consistence with the asset theory of the dema nd for money. Copyright 1987 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Using data on physical output per worker for twenty-three industries, it is shown that contrary to popular belief, German industry had not forged ahead of Britain by the 1930s. The pattern of Britain's comparative advantage is reflected in the fact that, although German productivity was substantially higher in heavy industry, British productivity was above German levels in light industry. Relative plant size is shown to be the most important approximate determinant of German/U.K. productivity levels. It is argued that cartelization was important in explaining the failure of Britain and Germany to close the productivity gap with the United States. Copyright 1990 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
In the middle of the twentieth century, Belgium seems to have undergone a fairly rapid transformation from a relatively low-wage economy to a high-wage economy. How could Belgian business handle this change in its cost structure? Was it through exceptional technical progress? The best-known statistics concerning productivity growth put Belgium near the bottom of the European league table, so that its gains in the relative wage stakes remain something of a mystery. Here the authors make a first, very tentative, approach to this problem. Copyright 1990 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
This paper reexamines earlier work by Atkinson and Harrison (1978, 1979), which presented a consistent series of estate-based estimates of the distribution of wealth in Englnd and Wales for the years 1923 to 1972, and conducted an econometric analysis of the trends over time in the distribution. Such a reexamination is timely for several reasons. First, estate data allowing a considerable extension of our series are now available. Second, we can conduct a test of the forecasting ability of our original econometric specification. Third, there are grounds for modifying this specification, although, as it turns out, the revised formulation performs only marginally better than the original. Finally, the newly estimated equation can be used to examine the likely impact on the distribution of wealth of recent sharp fluctuation in stock and house prices, both of which play a central role in determining changes in the share of total wealth owned by top wealth-holders. Copyright 1989 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
This paper examines the structure and direction of developing Asia’s trade over the past two decades. The impacts on developing Asia of the economic slowdown in 2009–2010 in high-income countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which includes the European Union (EU), Japan, and United States (US) are projected through a computable general equilibrium model (CGE) of world trade and production. In addition, the impacts of fiscal stimulus and the rise of protectionist sentiments within developing Asia are examined. The expansion of intraregional trade in Asia reflects the role of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as an assembly point and its reliance on demand from outside the region, the EU and the US in particular. The trade channel is crucial in transmitting economic distress from the OECD countries to developing Asia. The projection shows that developing Asia will continue to suffer from demand decline in OECD countries, with the PRC and India being the most impacted. Though Southeast Asia faces reduced exports to the OECD countries, its exports are reduced significantly to other Asian exporters, demonstrating the indirect trade linkages that now exist in the global economy. Fiscal stimulus from the largest economies (including PRC, EU, Japan, and US) could help boost trade and gross domestic product growth in developing Asia but it is not projected to offset entirely the negative impact from the global economic downturn. Protectionism has a negative impact on the countries and regions that take that course. Southeast Asia would be the most impacted by protectionism. If Southeast Asian countries were to raise their applied tariffs to the maximum most-favored nation bound rates under the World Trade Organization, the impact would be negative on real gross domestic product. Heavy manufactures followed by light manufactures, electronics, and textiles are most impacted.
This paper describes a capital services dataset for the United Kingdom developed for use in empirical work, and some of its key features. The estimates are consistent with National Accounts output estimates, making them ideal for use in growth-accounting or business-cycle analysis. The divergence between the volume of capital services and the volume of the capital stock after 1980 is highlighted. This divergence is driven by a shift in investment towards short-lived and more productive information and communication technology assets for which the flow of capital services is high. Standard capital stock measures understate growth in the productive input of capital, especially after 1990. Copyright (c) Blackwell Publishing Ltd and the Department of Economics, University of Oxford, 2009.
By 1975, the effect of a year's primary schooling upon the wages of Africans in South Africa had fallen to about 2.5 percent--one of the lowest primary schooling returns in the world. Secondary schooling returns were high throughout the period 1960-90. The collapse of primary schooling returns was due to declining school quality, an increase in the supply of primary school graduates, an increase in mining wages in the mid-seventies, and wage regulation by the Industrial Councils and Wage Boards. The low level of the return, compared with the returns to other races in South Africa, is due to the low quality of African primary schools. Implications for education spending patterns and wage regulation are pointed out. Copyright 1996 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
This paper examines the employment and turnover experiences of U.K. manufacturing industries. It focuses on differences in the rate of job loss, differences in the rate of turnover, and the link between the two. Cross-section evidence is provided, covering all the manufacturing industries, and time series regressions for four principal industries. Differences in the rate of job loss depend on variations in the rate of change of desired employment and differences in the speed of adjustment arising from differences in union strength and the quit rate. reflection of demographic and skill factors. Copyright 1989 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
The authors analyze the determinants of Norwegian households' consumption expenditure, using quarterly data for the period 1966(1)-1989(4). Expenditure, income and a broad measure of households wealth appear to form a cointegrating relationship. Likelihood ratio tests do not disprove that the cointegrating vector can be estimated efficiently from a single equation, i.e. a "consumption function." On this basis, a dynamic model of private expenditure is developed. Despite structural breaks in both the income and wealth processes, the consumption function displays considerable parameter constancy. Thus, the model can be attributed at least some degree of autonomy and structural invariance. On the basis of the parameter invariance tests, the "Lucas-critique" is in fact refuted. Consequently, the rational expectations approach yields (surprisingly) little insight into the causes of "breakdown" in pre-existing models. Instead their results suggest a more prosaic "left out variables" explanation, namely long-run wealth effects. Copyright 1992 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
This paper provides estimates of total factor productivity growth for the regions of the United Kingdom. It shows that the peripheral regions generally performed better than the national average in the 1980s. A model to explain total factor productivity growth found that much of this increase can be attributed to a general upskilling of a more flexible workforce, falling plant sizes, and a 'catch-up' effect in the unionized sector. Copyright 1997 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
This paper examines the nature of the productivity slowdown in the 1970s in the U.K. manufacturing industry by using a disaggregated industrial analysis. The extent of the slowdown in a particular industry is related to the capital and energy intensity of the industry and also to the previous rate of productivity growth and the size of the slowdown in output growth. The influence of several important industrial characteristics, such as the openness of an industry to trade, the type of product market served, and the degree of competition, on the interindustry pattern of productivity behavior is also examined. Copyright 1988 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
In this note, the authors apply to Colombia the method used in a recent paper by J. B. Knight a nd R. Sabot (1983) to measure the influence of educational expansion on the inequality of pay in East Africa. Their analysis was conducted within a framework first suggested by S. Kuznets (1955) and elaborat ed by S. Robinson (1976). Copyright 1988 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Top-cited authors
Søren Johansen
  • University of Copenhagen
David Roodman
Michael Osterwald-Lenum
  • Statistics Denmark, Copenhagen, Denmark
David Hendry
  • University of Oxford
Juan J. Dolado
  • University Carlos III de Madrid