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The Surprising Effects of the Great Recession: Losers and Winners in Thailand in 2008–09

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  • Haughton, Jonathan
  • Khandker, Shahidur R.

Abstract

The “great recession” of 2008–09 affected Thailand significantly, reducing exports by 19% and tourist arrivals by 14%. Yet monthly survey data show, after controlling for household variables, that real consumption per capita rose in 2009 relative to 2008 for most groups, including the poor, and urban and rural households. Losers included some residents of Bangkok, especially those aged 20–29. Nationally, school enrollment rates did not fall, and durables purchases rose. A simulation exercise based on the drop in GDP would have missed these effects. Hence the importance of country-specific policy analysis, rooted in timely local evidence.

Suggested Citation

  • Haughton, Jonathan & Khandker, Shahidur R., 2014. "The Surprising Effects of the Great Recession: Losers and Winners in Thailand in 2008–09," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 77-92.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:56:y:2014:i:c:p:77-92
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2013.10.018
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