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Sibling Rivalry and Strategic Parental Transfers

  • Yang-Ming Chang

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Kansas State University)

  • Dennis L. Weisman

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Kansas State University)

This paper develops a noncooperative Nash model in which two siblings compete for their parents' financial transfers. Treating sibling rivalry as a “rent-seeking contest” and using a Tullock-Skaperdas contest success function, we derive the conditions under which more financial resources are transferred to the sibling with lower earnings. We find that parental transfers are compensatory and that the family as an institution serves as an “income equalizer.” Within a sequential game framework, we characterize the endogeneity of parental transfers and link it to parents' income, altruism, and children's supply of merit goods (e.g., parent-child companionship or child services). We show that merit goods are subject to a “moral hazard” problem from the parents' perspective.

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Article provided by Southern Economic Association in its journal Southern Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 71 (2005)
Issue (Month): 4 (April)
Pages: 821-836

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Handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:71:4:y:2005:p:821-836
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.southerneconomic.org/

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  18. Cox, Donald, 1987. "Motives for Private Income Transfers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(3), pages 508-46, June.
  19. Lillard, L-A & Willis, R-J, 1997. "Motives for Intergenerational Transfers. Evidence from Malaysia," Papers 97-04, RAND - Reprint Series.
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