Households' savings in China
AbstractThis paper studies the determinants of Chinese households’ saving. Domestic saving in China is the highest in the world in terms of GDP and it is mirrored in a large and persistent current account surplus. First, we show that notwithstanding the rising contribution of government and firms to national savings, they stand out because of households’ behaviour. Our econometric analysis proceeds from the work of Modigliani and Cao (2004) that explained rising personal saving in China within the life-cycle hypothesis. We prove that their explanation is insufficient. Then, using panel data and exploiting differences among provinces and between urban and rural households, we show that there is a significant dissimilarity in savings decisions in urban and rural areas and that motives other than those envisaged in the life-cycle model might play a major role, above all precautionary savings and liquidity constraints. Our results suggest that to reduce the propensity to save of Chinese households it is necessary to improve the provision of social services and to facilitate access to credit.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area in its series Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) with number 838.
Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
China; saving rate; precautionary savings;
Other versions of this item:
- D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
- E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
- O18 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-12-19 (All new papers)
- NEP-MFD-2011-12-19 (Microfinance)
- NEP-TRA-2011-12-19 (Transition Economics)
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Understanding Chinese household savings
by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2012-02-16 14:53:00
- Dreger, Christian & Wang, Tongsan & Zhang, Yanqun, 2013.
"Understanding Chinese consumption: The impact of hukou,"
343, European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), Department of Business Administration and Economics.
- Christian Dreger & Tongsan Wang & Yanqun Zhang, 2013. "Understanding Chinese Consumption: The Impact of Hukou," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1341, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Dreger, Christian & Wang, Tongsan & Zhang, Yanqun, 2013. "Understanding Chinese Consumption: The Impact of Hukou," IZA Discussion Papers 7819, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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