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Income transfers of Chinese rural migrants: some empirical evidence from Jinan

  • Qiming Liu
  • Barry Reilly

This paper explores the determinants of migrant remittances to rural households using data on male migrant workers drawn from the Jinan Municipality in Shandong province in the summer of 1995. The majority of migrants are found to retain close links with their rural households with 85% remitting some income in the 12 months preceding the survey date. The transfers accounted for over a third of urban labour earnings. A number of models are used to undertake the estimation of remittance functions. No evidence of altruistic behaviour is uncovered and evidence for exchange and coinsurance theories is mixed. Labour earnings proved the most robust determinant of the level of remittance and the remittance/wage elasticity calculated is found to be at the top end of the range of estimates obtained in the literature.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Applied Economics.

Volume (Year): 36 (2004)
Issue (Month): 12 ()
Pages: 1295-1313

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Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:36:y:2004:i:12:p:1295-1313
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  1. Stark, Oded & Taylor, J. Edward & Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1988. "Migration, remittances and inequality : A sensitivity analysis using the extended Gini index," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 309-322, May.
  2. Altonji, Joseph G & Hayashi, Fumio & Kotlikoff, Laurence J, 1997. "Parental Altruism and Inter Vivos Transfers: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(6), pages 1121-66, December.
  3. Fields, Gary S., 1975. "Rural-urban migration, urban unemployment and underemployment, and job-search activity in LDCs," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 165-187, June.
  4. Stark, Oded & Taylor, J Edward & Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1986. "Remittances and Inequality," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(383), pages 722-40, September.
  5. Cox, Donald & Eser, Zekeriya & Jimenez, Emmanuel, 1998. "Motives for private transfers over the life cycle: An analytical framework and evidence for Peru," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 57-80, February.
  6. Lucas, Robert E.B., 1993. "Internal migration in developing countries," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 13, pages 721-798 Elsevier.
  7. Stark, Oded & Levhari, David, 1982. "On Migration and Risk in LDCs," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(1), pages 191-96, October.
  8. Knight, J & Song, L & Huaibin, J, 1997. "Chinese Rural Migrants in Urban Enterprises : Three Perspectives," Economics Series Working Papers 99190, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  9. Knowles, James C. & Anker, Richard, 1981. "An analysis of income transfers in a developing country : The case of Kenya," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 205-226, April.
  10. Brown, Richard P. C., 1997. "Estimating remittance functions for Pacific Island Migrants," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 613-626, January.
  11. Lucas, Robert E B & Stark, Oded, 1985. "Motivations to Remit: Evidence from Botswana," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(5), pages 901-18, October.
  12. Pagan, Adrian & Vella, Frank, 1989. "Diagnostic Tests for Models Based on Individual Data: A Survey," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 4(S), pages S29-59, Supplemen.
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