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Endogenous Borrowing Constraints And Wealth Inequality

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  • Bhattacharya, Joydeep
  • Qiao, Xue
  • Wang, Min

Abstract

This paper studies the evolution of wealth inequality in an economy with endogenousborrowing constraints. In the model economy, agents need to borrow to finance humancapital investments but cannot commit to repaying their loans. Creditors can punishdefaulters by banishing them permanently from the credit market. In equilibrium, loandefault is prevented by imposing a borrowing limit tied to the borrower's inheritance.The heterogeneity in inheritances translates into heterogeneity in the borrowing limits:endogenously, some young borrowers face a zero borrowing limit, some are partlyconstrained, while others are unconstrained. Depending on the initial distribution ofinheritances, it is possible all lineages are attracted to either the zero-borrowing-limitsteady state or to the unconstrained-borrowing steady state — long-run equality. It isalso possible some lineages end up at one steady state and the rest at the other — completepolarization. Interestingly, the wealth dynamics in the model closely resemblethat in the seminal work of Galor and Zeira (1993).
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Suggested Citation

  • Bhattacharya, Joydeep & Qiao, Xue & Wang, Min, 2016. "Endogenous Borrowing Constraints And Wealth Inequality," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 20(06), pages 1413-1431, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:macdyn:v:20:y:2016:i:06:p:1413-1431_00
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E25 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Aggregate Factor Income Distribution
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • O23 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Fiscal and Monetary Policy in Development
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models

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