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The Effects of Income and Wealth on Time and MOney Transfers Between Parents and Children

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  • Joseph G. Altonji
  • Fumio Hayashi
  • Laurence Kotlikoff

Abstract

We use the 1988 (Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) to study the effects of income and wealth on transfers of money and time between individuals and their parents as well as the effects of incomes of other relatives on these flows. We relate the relative incomes of parents and parents in-law to transfer amounts given andreceived by married couples. We also study how the relative incomes of divorced parents influence transfers. We find that money transfers tend to reduce inequality in household incomes and that time transfers are only weakly related to income differences. Richer siblings give more to parents and receive less. Among parents and parents in-law the richer set of parents is more likely to give money and less likely to receive money. The same is true of divorced parents. In contrast to the implications of simple exchange models of transfers, there is little evidence in the cross section or in the analysis using siblings that parental income or wealth raises time transfers from children or that time transfers are exchanged for money transfers. In the cross section and among siblings, the strong negative relationship between time transfers and distance from parents is not associated with a strong negative relationship between distance and money transfers. We discuss the implications of our results for alternative models of transfers.

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Paper provided by Institute for Policy Resarch at Northwestern University in its series IPR working papers with number 96-5.

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Handle: RePEc:wop:nwuipr:96-5

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  1. Yannis M. Ioannides & Kambon Kan, 1999. "The Nature of Two-Directional Intergenerational Transfers of Money and Time: An Empirical Analysis," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 9917, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  2. Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H. & Bernheim, B. Douglas, 1986. "The Strategic Bequest Motive," Scholarly Articles 3721794, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Altonji, Joseph G & Hayashi, Fumio & Kotlikoff, Laurence J, 1997. "Parental Altruism and Inter Vivos Transfers: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(6), pages 1121-66, December.
  4. Schoeni, Robert F, 2002. " Does Unemployment Insurance Displace Familial Assistance?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 110(1-2), pages 99-119, January.
  5. Hayashi, Fumio & Altonji, Joseph & Kotlikoff, Laurence, 1996. "Risk-Sharing between and within Families," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 261-94, March.
  6. William G. Gale & John Karl Scholz, 1991. "Intergenerational Transfers and the Accumulation of Wealth," UCLA Economics Working Papers 624, UCLA Department of Economics.
  7. Schoeni, Robert F, 1997. "Private Interhousehold Transfers of Money and Time: New Empirical Evidence," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 43(4), pages 423-48, December.
  8. Udry, Christopher, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in a Rural Credit Market: An Empirical Investigation in Northern Nigeria," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 495-526, July.
  9. Menchik, Paul L, 1980. "Primogeniture, Equal Sharing, and the U. S. Distribution of Wealth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 94(2), pages 299-316, March.
  10. Joseph G. Altonji & Fumio Hayashi & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1993. "Is the Extended Family Altruistically Linked? Direct Tests Using Micro Data," NBER Working Papers 3046, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Cox, Donald, 1990. "Intergenerational Transfers and Liquidity Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(1), pages 187-217, February.
  12. Andreoni, James, 1989. "Giving with Impure Altruism: Applications to Charity and Ricardian Equivalence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1447-58, December.
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