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Transmission and inequality of wealth: An empirical study of wealth mobility from 1800 to 1938 in France

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  • Luc Arrondel

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  • Cyril Grange

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Abstract

This paper endeavors to measure the intergenerational transmission of wealth inequalities over the 1800-1938 period. For this purpose, we have consulted historical data composed of wealth genealogies covering the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries. The database was created from families included in the "3,000 families" survey of those individuals residing in the Loire-Inférieure département. The empirical study reveals a relatively large degree of intergenerational immobility: those whose father had twice the average level of wealth themselves upon death leave behind 1.45 times the average wealth of their generation.
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Suggested Citation

  • Luc Arrondel & Cyril Grange, 2006. "Transmission and inequality of wealth: An empirical study of wealth mobility from 1800 to 1938 in France," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 4(2), pages 209-232, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jecinq:v:4:y:2006:i:2:p:209-232
    DOI: 10.1007/s10888-005-9015-3
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kerwin Kofi Charles & Erik Hurst, 2003. "The Correlation of Wealth across Generations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1155-1182, December.
    2. Elise s. Brezis, 2002. "Fertility, Non-Altruism and Economic Growth: Industrialization in the Nineteenth Century," Working Papers 2002-14, Bar-Ilan University, Department of Economics.
    3. Gokhale, Jagadeesh & Kotlikoff, Laurence J. & Sefton, James & Weale, Martin, 2001. "Simulating the transmission of wealth inequality via bequests," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 93-128, January.
    4. J. R. Kearl & Clayne L. Pope, 1981. "Intergenerational Effects of the Distribution of Income and Wealth: The Utah Experience, 1850-1900," NBER Working Papers 0754, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Atkinson, A. B. & Bourguignon, F. & Morrisson, C., 1988. "Earnings mobility," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 619-632, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Degan, Arianna & Thibault, Emmanuel, 2016. "Dynastic accumulation of wealth," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 66-78.
    2. Luc Arrondel & Cyril Grange, 2014. "Bequests and family traditions: the case of nineteenth century France," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 12(3), pages 439-459, September.
    3. Adermon, Adrian & Lindahl, Mikael & Waldenström, Daniel, 2016. "Intergenerational wealth mobility and the role of inheritance: Evidence from multiple generations," CEPR Discussion Papers 11456, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Luc Arrondel & André Masson & Daniel Verger, 2008. "Le patrimoine en France : état des lieux, historique et perspectives," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 417(1), pages 3-25.
    5. repec:dau:papers:123456789/5056 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Lars Kunze, 2012. "Like Father, Like Son: Inheriting and Bequeathing," Ruhr Economic Papers 0318, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    7. Coşgel, Metin M. & Ergene, Boğaç A., 2012. "Inequality of Wealth in the Ottoman Empire: War, Weather, and Long-Term Trends in Eighteenth-Century Kastamonu," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 72(02), pages 308-331, June.
    8. Luc Arrondel, 2009. ""My Father was right": The transmission of values between generations," Working Papers halshs-00566808, HAL.
    9. repec:zbw:rwirep:0318 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Kunze, Lars, 2012. "Like Father, Like Son: Inheriting and Bequeathing," Ruhr Economic Papers 318, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    11. Luc Arrondel, 2013. "Are “daddy’s boys” just as rich as daddy? The transmission of values between generations," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 11(4), pages 439-471, December.

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    Keywords

    Galton; inequality; inheritance; wealth transmission;

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