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Contract enforcement, capital accumulation, and Argentina's long-run decline

  • Leandro Prados de la Escosura

    ()

    (Historia Economica e Instituciones and Instituto Figuerola, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Calle Madrid, 126, Getafe, 28903 Madrid, Spain.)

  • Isabel Sanz-Villarroya

    ()

    (Estructura Economica, Economia Publica e Historia Economica,Universidad de Zaragoza, Gran Via 2, Zaragoza, Spain.)

Argentina has slipped from being among the ten world’s richest countries by the eve of World War I to its current position close to mid-range developing countries. Why did Argentina fall behind? We employ a structural model to investigate the extent to which the enforceability of contracts and the security of property rights, as measured by Clague et al.’s “contract intensive money” (CIM), conditioned broad capital accumulation and, subsequently, economic performance in Argentina. Our results suggest that poor contract enforcement played a significant role at the origins of Argentina’s unique experience of long-run decline.

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Article provided by Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC) in its journal Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History.

Volume (Year): 3 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 1-26

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Handle: RePEc:afc:cliome:v:3:y:2009:i:1:p:1-26
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