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Origins and Consequences of Child Labor Restrictions: A Macroeconomic Perspective

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  • Matthias Doepke
  • Dirk Krueger

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the positive and normative consequences of child-labor restrictions for economic aggregates and welfare. We argue that even though the laissez-faire equilibrium may be inefficient, there are usually better policies to cure these inefficiencies than the imposition of a child-labor ban. Given this finding, we investigate the potential political-economic reasons behind the emergence and persistence of child-labor legislation. Our investigation is based on a structural dynamic general equilibrium model that provides a coherent and uniform framework for our analysis.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12665.

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Date of creation: Nov 2006
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Publication status: published as Rupert, Peter (ed.) Frontiers in Family Economics. Bingley, UK: Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2008.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12665

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  1. Matthias Doepke, 2001. "Accounting for Fertility Decline During the Transition to Growth," UCLA Economics Working Papers, UCLA Department of Economics 804, UCLA Department of Economics.
  2. Dessy, Sylvain E. & Pallage, Stephane, 2001. "Child labor and coordination failures," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 469-476, August.
  3. Basu, Kaushik, 1998. "Child labor : cause, consequence, and cure, with remarks on International Labor Standards," Policy Research Working Paper Series, The World Bank 2027, The World Bank.
  4. Basu, Kaushik & Van, Pham Hoang, 1998. "The Economics of Child Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 412-27, June.
  5. Drusilla K. Brown & Alan V. Deardorff & Robert M Stern, 2001. "Child Labor: Theory, Evidence, and Policy," Working Papers, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan 474, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  6. Ranjan, P., 1999. ""Credit Constraints and the Phenomenon of Child Labor"," Papers, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences 98-99-12, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  7. Moshe Hazan & Binyamin Berdugo, 2002. "Child Labour, Fertility, and Economic Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(482), pages 810-828, October.
  8. Dessy, Sylvain & Knowles, John, 2007. "Why Is Child Labor Illegal?," IZA Discussion Papers 2901, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Pallage, Stephane & Zimmermann, Christian, 2007. "Buying out child labor," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 75-90, March.
  10. Dirk Krueger & Jessica Tjornhom Donohue, 2004. "On the Distributional Consequences of Child Labor Legislation," NBER Working Papers 10347, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Stephen L. Parente & Richard Rogerson & Randall Wright, 2000. "Homework in Development Economics: Household Production and the Wealth of Nations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 680-687, August.
  12. Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2005. "The macroeconomics of child labor regulation," Staff Report, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis 354, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  13. Eric V. Edmonds & Nina Pavcnik, 2005. "Child Labor in the Global Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 199-220, Winter.
  14. Jean-Marie Baland & James A. Robinson, 2000. "Is Child Labor Inefficient?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 663-679, August.
  15. Greenwood, J. & Rogerson, R. & Wright, R., 1993. "Household Production in Real Business Cycle Thoery," RCER Working Papers, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER) 347, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
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Cited by:
  1. Dessy, Sylvain & Knowles, John, 2007. "Why Is Child Labor Illegal?," IZA Discussion Papers 2901, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2009. "Do International Labor Standards Contribute to the Persistence of the Child Labor Problem?," NBER Working Papers 15050, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Doepke, Matthias, 2013. "Exploitation, Altruism, and Social Welfare: An Economic Exploration," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 9509, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Doepke, Matthias & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2008. "International Labor Standards and the Political Economy of Child Labor Regulation," IZA Discussion Papers 3742, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Matthias Doepke, 2007. "The Research Agenda: Matthias Doepke on the Transition from Stagnation to Growth," EconomicDynamics Newsletter, Review of Economic Dynamics, Review of Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(2), April.

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