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Personal and Corporate Saving in South Africa

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  • Aron, Janine
  • Muellbauer, John

Abstract

Low domestic saving rates in South Africa may perpetuate a low-growth trap. The decline in government saving, a major reason for the overall decline in saving, is now being reversed. However, personal saving rates have fallen since 1993, and corporate rates since 1995, and both may decline further with lower real interest rates. It is important to understand both personal and corporate saving behaviour in order to formulate policies to raise the domestic saving rate in line with the needs of economic growth. This article summarizes our previous work on the household sector, emphasizing the role of financial liberalization, assets, and income expectations, and it explains sectoral links and policy implications. Further, it analyses South Africa's corporate saving rate in detail. Models are developed both for the share of profits in national income, including the roles of the terms of trade, tax effects, and the price to unit labour cost margin, and for the share of corporate saving in profits, which is found to depend on inflation, the real interest rate, dividend taxation, and financial liberalization. Corporate saving is remarkably underresearched, given its importance in many economies. This research thus puts the saving and growth concerns of Kaldor into a modern empirical context.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2656.

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Date of creation: Dec 2000
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2656

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Keywords: Corporate Pay Out Policy; Corporate Profit Share; Corporate Saving; Fiscal And Monetary Policy; Personal Saving;

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References

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  1. Schmidt-Hebbel, K. & Serven, L., 1997. "Saving Across the World: Puzzles and Policies," World Bank - Discussion Papers 354, World Bank.
  2. Hall, Robert E & Mishkin, Frederic S, 1982. "The Sensitivity of Consumption to Transitory Income: Estimates from Panel Data on Households," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(2), pages 461-81, March.
  3. Bayoumi, Tamim A, 1993. "Financial Deregulation and Consumption in the United Kingdom," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(3), pages 536-39, August.
  4. Oriana Bandiera & Gerard Caprio Jr. & Patrick Honohan & Fabio Schiantarelli, 1998. "Does Financial Reform Raise or Reduce Savings?," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 413, Boston College Department of Economics.
  5. R. Glenn Hubbard & Jonathan S. Skinner, 2009. "Assessing the Effectiveness of Saving Incentives," Books, American Enterprise Institute, number 24067, 9.
  6. John Muellbauer & Janine Aron, 1999. "Estimates of personal sector wealth for South Africa," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/1999-17, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  7. Janine Aron & John Muellbauer, 2000. "Financial liberalisation, consumption and debt in South Africa," CSAE Working Paper Series 2000-22, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  8. John Y. Campbell & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1989. "Consumption, Income and Interest Rates: Reinterpreting the Time Series Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1989, Volume 4, pages 185-246 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. James G. MacKinnon, 2010. "Critical Values for Cointegration Tests," Working Papers 1227, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  10. Hall, Robert E, 1978. "Stochastic Implications of the Life Cycle-Permanent Income Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 971-87, December.
  11. Geeta G. Kingdon & John B. Knight, 2000. "Are searching and non-searching unemployment distinct states when unemployment is high? The case of South Africa," CSAE Working Paper Series 2000-02, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  12. Roger H. Gordon & Joel Slemrod, 1998. "Are "Real" Responses to Taxes Simply Income Shifting Between Corporate and Personal Tax Bases?," NBER Working Papers 6576, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Banerjee, Anindya & Dolado, Juan J. & Galbraith, John W. & Hendry, David, 1993. "Co-integration, Error Correction, and the Econometric Analysis of Non-Stationary Data," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288107, October.
  14. Feldstein, Martin S, 1970. "Corporate Taxation and Dividend Behaviour," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(1), pages 57-72, January.
  15. Lucio Sarno & Mark P. Taylor, . "Real Interest Rates, Liquidity Constraints and Financial Deregulation: Private Consumption Behaviour in the UK," Economics and Finance Discussion Papers 97-12, Economics and Finance Section, School of Social Sciences, Brunel University.
  16. Davidson, James E H, et al, 1978. "Econometric Modelling of the Aggregate Time-Series Relationship between Consumers' Expenditure and Income in the United Kingdom," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 88(352), pages 661-92, December.
  17. Steve Bond & Lucy Chennells & Michael Devereux, 1995. "Company dividends and taxes in the UK," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 16(3), pages 1-18, August.
  18. Jappelli, Tullio & Pagano, Marco, 1994. "Saving, Growth, and Liquidity Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(1), pages 83-109, February.
  19. James M. Poterba, 1987. "Tax Policy and Corporate Saving," Working papers 470, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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  21. repec:fth:oxesaf:99-17 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. repec:fth:harver:1435 is not listed on IDEAS
  23. Engle, Robert F & Granger, Clive W J, 1987. "Co-integration and Error Correction: Representation, Estimation, and Testing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(2), pages 251-76, March.
  24. Campbell, John Y. & Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1991. "The response of consumption to income : A cross-country investigation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 723-756, May.
  25. David, Paul A & Scadding, John L, 1974. "Private Savings: Ultrarationality, Aggregation, and "Denison's Law."," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages 225-49, Part I, M.
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