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Individual's Religiosity Enhances Trust: Latin American Evidence for the Puzzle

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  • PABLO BRANAS-GARZA
  • MÁXIMO ROSSI
  • DAYNA ZACLICEVER

Abstract

This paper explores the effect of religious observance and affiliation to the dominant religion (Catholicism) on trust in institutions and toward others, and market attitudes. The analysis is performed using a Latin American database of 20,000 respondents from 2004 by means of ordered probit models. The most interesting results are:(i) "Trust toward others is positively correlated with both religious observance" and "Catholic affiliation" (and "practice"). (ii) There is a "positive correlation between trust in the government, in the police, in the armed forces, in the judiciary and in the banking system and religious practice" in general. Identical positive findings are obtained for "Catholic affiliation" and "practice", although they may be affected by a majority effect. Moreover, there is no evidence to support the hypotheses of a negative effect of religion on social capital. Copyright (c) 2009 The Ohio State University.

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Article provided by Blackwell Publishing in its journal Journal of Money, Credit and Banking.

Volume (Year): 41 (2009)
Issue (Month): 2-3 (03)
Pages: 555-566

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Handle: RePEc:mcb:jmoncb:v:41:y:2009:i:2-3:p:555-566

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  1. Cox, James C., 2004. "How to identify trust and reciprocity," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 260-281, February.
  2. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1996. "Trust in Large Organizations," NBER Working Papers 5864, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Pablo Brañas-Garza & Shoshana Neuman, 2006. "Intergenerational Transmission of 'Religious Capital': Evidence from Spain," Papers on Economics of Religion 06/02, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
  4. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Introduction to the Economics of Religion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1465-1495, September.
  5. Garza, Pablo Brañas & Neuman, Shoshana, 2003. "Analyzing Religiosity Within an Economic Framework: The Case of Spanish Catholics," IZA Discussion Papers 868, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Productivity Commission, 2003. "Social capital: reviewing the concept and its policy implications," Public Economics 0307001, EconWPA.
  7. McCleary, Rachel & Barro, Robert, 2002. "Religion and Political Economy in an International Panel," Scholarly Articles 3221170, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce I. Sacerdote, 2008. "Education and Religion," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(2), pages 188-215.
  9. Guiso, Luigi & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2002. "People's Opium? Religion and Economic Attitudes," CEPR Discussion Papers 3588, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Azzi, Corry & Ehrenberg, Ronald G, 1975. "Household Allocation of Time and Church Attendance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(1), pages 27-56, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Brañas-Garza, Pablo & Espín, Antonio M. & Neuman, Shoshana, 2013. "Effects of religiosity on social behaviour: Experimental evidence from a representative sample of Spaniards," CEPR Discussion Papers 9709, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Berggren, Niclas & Bjørnskov, Christian, 2011. "Is the importance of religion in daily life related to social trust? Cross-country and cross-state comparisons," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 459-480.
  3. Searing, Elizabeth A.M., 2013. "Love thy neighbor? Recessions and interpersonal trust in Latin America," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 68-79.
  4. Jaime Ortiz, 2009. "Does Religion Distribution Matter in the Economic Growth of Latin America?," International Journal of Business and Economics, College of Business, and College of Finance, Feng Chia University, Taichung, Taiwan, vol. 8(3), pages 183-199, December.

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