IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Inter-vivos Transfers and Intergenerational Exchange


  • Cox, Donald
  • Rank, Mark R


The surge of interest in intergenerational transfers in the past decade has sparked a debate over the motivation for them. Are transfers given out of altruism or part of an exchange? While each motive is probably at work to some extent, they know little about whether one motive predominates. The question is relevant for issues concerning public income redistribution and inequality in the family but despite its importance, empirical evidence about motives is scarce because of limited data. They investigate a new data set, the National Survey of Families and Households, which remedies many of the shortcomings of other data sets containing private transfer information. They find that empirical patterns for inter-vivos transfers (i.e., transfers between living persons) are more consistent with exchange than altruism. Copyright 1992 by MIT Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Cox, Donald & Rank, Mark R, 1992. "Inter-vivos Transfers and Intergenerational Exchange," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(2), pages 305-314, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:74:y:1992:i:2:p:305-14

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to JSTOR subscribers. See for details.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Michael Rothschild, 1971. "On the Cost of Adjustment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 85(4), pages 605-622.
    2. Hamermesh, Daniel S., 1990. "Aggregate employment dynamics and lumpy adjustment costs," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 93-129, January.
    3. Robert F. Engle & Ta-Chung Liu, 1972. "Effects of Aggregation Over Time on Dynamic Characteristics of an Econometric Model," NBER Chapters,in: Econometric Models of Cyclical Behavior, Volumes 1 and 2, pages 673-737 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Card, David, 1986. "Efficient Contracts with Costly Adjustment: Short-run Employment Determination for Airline Mechanics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1045-1071, December.
    5. P. K. Trivedi, 1985. "Distributed Lags, Aggregation and Compounding: Some Econometric Implications," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(1), pages 19-35.
    6. Russell Davidson & Richard Harris, 1981. "Non-Convexities in Continuous Time Investment Theory," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(2), pages 235-253.
    7. Stephen Nickell, 1984. "An Investigation of the Determinants of Manufacturing Employment in the United Kingdom," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 51(4), pages 529-557.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:74:y:1992:i:2:p:305-14. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Kristin Waites). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.