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Gender 'Rebalancing' in China: A Global-Level Analysis

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Author Info

  • Jane Golley
  • Rod Tyers

Abstract

The rise in China’s sex ratio at birth during the last two decades has had a wide range of economic and social consequences including excessive savings as families with boys compete to match their sons with scarce girls and rising disaffection and crime amongst the unmarried male population. These consequences are analysed using a global dynamic model that projects demographic behaviour and economic performance through to 2030. The results show that the proportion of unmatched unskilled Chinese men of reproductive age could be as high as one in four by that time, unless effective policies are put in place to rebalance the sex ratio at birth. Even then, it will take decades to reduce the sex ratio in the general population. This will come at a cost in terms of economic growth via the impact on reduced savings, although a lower saving rate offers some rebalancing on a global scale. Moreover, the results suggest that more than offsetting gains could accrue from productivity improvements stemming from reduced crime.

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File URL: http://cama.crawford.anu.edu.au/pdf/working-papers/2012/462012.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series CAMA Working Papers with number 2012-46.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2012-46

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Related research

Keywords: China; Growth; Demography; Sex ratio; Imbalance;

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References

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  1. Jane Golley & Rod Tyers, 2012. "Demographic Dividends, Dependencies and Economic Growth in China and India," CAMA Working Papers 2012-06, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  2. Monica Das Gupta & Woojin Chung & Li Shuzhuo, 2009. "Evidence for an Incipient Decline in Numbers of Missing Girls in China and India," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 35(2), pages 401-416.
  3. Fang Cai, 2012. "The Coming Demographic Impact on China's Growth: The Age Factor in the Middle-Income Trap," Asian Economic Papers, MIT Press, vol. 11(1), pages 95-111, February.
  4. Kate Antonovics & Robert Town, 2004. "Are All the Good Men Married? Uncovering the Sources of the Marital Wage Premium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 317-321, May.
  5. Josh Angrist, 2002. "How Do Sex Ratios Affect Marriage And Labor Markets? Evidence From America'S Second Generation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 997-1038, August.
  6. Rod Tyers & Ian Bain & Jahnvi Vedi, 2006. "The global implications of freer skilled migration," ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics 2006-468, Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics.
  7. Jane Golley & Rod Tyers, 2012. "Population Pessimism and Economic Optimism in the Asian Giants," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(11), pages 1387-1416, November.
  8. Charles Yuji Horioka & Junmin Wan, 2007. "The determinants of household saving in China: a dynamic panel analysis of provincial data," Working Paper Series 2007-28, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  9. Qingyuan Du & Shang-Jin Wei, 2011. "A Darwinian Perspective on "Exchange Rate Undervaluation"," NBER Working Papers 16788, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  11. David Neumark & Sanders D. Korenman, 1988. "Does marriage really make men more productive?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 29, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  12. Becker, Gary S, 1985. "Human Capital, Effort, and the Sexual Division of Labor," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages S33-58, January.
  13. Stephan Klasen & Claudia Wink, 2003. ""Missing Women": Revisiting The Debate," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2-3), pages 263-299.
  14. Qian, Nancy, 2006. "Missing Women and the Price of Tea in China: The Effect of Sex-Specific Earnings on Sex Imbalance," CEPR Discussion Papers 5986, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Dani Rodrik, 1998. "Where Did All The Growth Go? External Shocks, Social Conflict, and Growth Collapses," NBER Working Papers 6350, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Franco Modigliani & Shi Larry Cao, 2004. "The Chinese Saving Puzzle and the Life-Cycle Hypothesis," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(1), pages 145-170, March.
  17. Rod Tyers & Jane Golley & Bu Yongxiang & Ian Bain, 2006. "China's Economic Growth and its Real Exchange Rate," ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics 2006-476, Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics.
  18. Shang-Jin Wei & Xiaobo Zhang, 2011. "Sex Ratios, Entrepreneurship, and Economic Growth in the People’s Republic of China," NBER Working Papers 16800, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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