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The Pattern of Household Savings during a Hyperinflation: The Case of Urban China in the Late 1980s

  • Aaberge, Rolf
  • Zhu, Yu

This paper presents evidence on household savings in urban regions of the Chinese provinces Sichuan and Liaoning, based on data from the State Statistical Bureau's Urban Household Survey for the late 1980s. In this period the Chinese economy was subject to extensive reforms that resulted in rapid economic growth followed by extremely high inflation. The high inflation rates gave the households strong motives to switch from financial savings to purchase of consumer durables, which also appear to be consistent with the structure of the observed data. By providing empirical evidence on the relative importance of savings by lower, middle and upper income groups for single-child families and for all households, this study also discusses whether savings decisions depend on the level of household income. Single-child families are focused, not only because of their growing dominance in the current Chinese society, but also to control for the effect of demographic disparities. Copyright 2001 by The International Association for Research in Income and Wealth.

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Article provided by International Association for Research in Income and Wealth in its journal Review of Income & Wealth.

Volume (Year): 47 (2001)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 181-202

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Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:47:y:2001:i:2:p:181-202
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  1. Angus Deaton & Christina H. Paxson, 1993. "Saving, Growth, and Aging in Taiwan," NBER Working Papers 4330, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Pudney, Stephen, 1993. "Income and Wealth Inequality and the Life Cycle: A Non-parametric Analysis for China," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(3), pages 249-76, July-Sept.
  3. Yingyi Qian, 1988. "Urban and Rural Household Saving in China," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(4), pages 592-627, December.
  4. Cole, Harold L & Mailath, George J & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1992. "Social Norms, Savings Behavior, and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(6), pages 1092-1125, December.
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