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Rainfall, Financial Development, and Remittances: Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Rabah Arezki


    (International Monetary Fund (IMF))

  • Markus Bruckner


    (School of Economics, University of Adelaide)

We use annual variations in rainfall to examine the effects that exogenous, transitory income shocks have on remittances in a panel of 41 Sub-Saharan African countries during the period 1970-2007. Our main finding is that on average rainfall shocks have an insignificant contemporaneous effect on remittances. However, the marginal effect is significantly decreasing in the share of domestic credit to GDP. So much so, that at high levels of credit to GDP rainfall shocks have a significant negative effect on remittances, while at low levels of credit to GDP the effect of rainfall on remittances is significantly positive.

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Paper provided by University of Adelaide, School of Economics in its series School of Economics Working Papers with number 2011-30.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:adl:wpaper:2011-30
Contact details of provider: Postal: Adelaide SA 5005
Phone: (618) 8303 5540
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  1. Markus Brückner & Kerstin Gerling & Hans Grüner, 2010. "Wealth inequality and credit markets: evidence from three industrialized countries," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 155-176, June.
  2. Edward Miguel & Shanker Satyanath & Ernest Sergenti, 2004. "Economic Shocks and Civil Conflict: An Instrumental Variables Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(4), pages 725-753, August.
  3. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Susan Pozo, 2006. "Migration, Remittances, and Male and Female Employment Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 222-226, May.
  4. HwaJung Choi, 2007. "Are Remittances Insurance? Evidence from Rainfall Shocks in the Philippines," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 21(2), pages 219-248, May.
  5. Gupta, Sanjeev & Pattillo, Catherine A. & Wagh, Smita, 2009. "Effect of Remittances on Poverty and Financial Development in Sub-Saharan Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 104-115, January.
  6. Salvador Barrios & Luisito Bertinelli & Eric Strobl, 2010. "Trends in Rainfall and Economic Growth in Africa: A Neglected Cause of the African Growth Tragedy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(2), pages 350-366, May.
  7. Rabah Arezki & Markus Bruckner, 2011. "Rainfall, Financial Development, and Remittances: Evidence From Sub-Saharan Africa," IMF Working Papers 11/153, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Freund, Caroline & Spatafora, Nikola, 2008. "Remittances, transaction costs, and informality," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 356-366, June.
  9. Antonio Ciccone, 2011. "Economic Shocks and Civil Conflict: A Comment," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 215-27, October.
  10. Serdar Sayan, 2006. "Business Cycles and Workers' Remittances: How Do Migrant Workers Respond to Cyclical Movements of GDP At Home?," IMF Working Papers 06/52, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Acosta, Pablo A. & Lartey, Emmanuel K.K. & Mandelman, Federico S., 2009. "Remittances and the Dutch disease," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 102-116, September.
  12. Yang Dean, 2008. "Coping with Disaster: The Impact of Hurricanes on International Financial Flows, 1970-2002," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-45, June.
  13. Dilip Ratha & William Shaw, 2007. "South-South Migration and Remittances," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6733.
  14. Cynthia Bansak & Brian Chezum, 2009. "How Do Remittances Affect Human Capital Formation of School-Age Boys and Girls?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 145-48, May.
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