IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/bfr/banfra/690.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Toll of Tariffs: Protectionism, Education and Fertility in Late 19th Century France

Author

Listed:
  • Vincent Bignon
  • Cecilia Garcia-Peñalosa

Abstract

This paper examines a novel negative impact of trade tariffs and the costs they induce by documenting how protectionism reversed the long-term improvements in education and the fertility transition that were well under way in late 19th-century France. The Méline tariff, a tariff on cereals introduced in 1892, was a major protectionist shock that shifted relative prices in favor of agriculture and away from industry. In a context in which the latter was more intensive in skills than agriculture, the tariff reduced the relative return to education, which in turn affected parents’ decisions about the quantity and quality of children. We use regional differences in the importance of cereal production in the local economy to estimate the impact of the tariff. Our findings indicate that the tariff reduced enrollment in primary education and increased birthrates and fertility. The magnitude of these effects was substantial. In regions with average shares of employment in cereal production, the tariff offset the (downward) trend in birthrates for 13 years; in those with the highest cereal employment shares, there was a delay of up to 22 years.

Suggested Citation

  • Vincent Bignon & Cecilia Garcia-Peñalosa, 2018. "The Toll of Tariffs: Protectionism, Education and Fertility in Late 19th Century France," Working papers 690, Banque de France.
  • Handle: RePEc:bfr:banfra:690
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://publications.banque-france.fr/sites/default/files/medias/documents/wp690.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. L Alan Winters, 2004. "Trade Liberalisation and Economic Performance: An Overview," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(493), pages 4-21, February.
    2. Neil Cummins, 2013. "Marital fertility and wealth during the fertility transition: rural F rance, 1750–1850," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 66(2), pages 449-476, May.
    3. Eric V. Edmonds & Nina Pavcnik & Petia Topalova, 2010. "Trade Adjustment and Human Capital Investments: Evidence from Indian Tariff Reform," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(4), pages 42-75, October.
    4. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2002. "Natural Selection and the Origin of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1133-1191.
    5. Claude Diebolt & Tapas Mishra & Faustine Perrin, 2015. "Did Gender-Bias Matter in the Quantity- Quality Trade-off in the 19th Century France ?," Working Papers of BETA 2015-28, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
    6. Joshua Angrist & Eric Bettinger & Erik Bloom & Elizabeth King & Michael Kremer, 2002. "Vouchers for Private Schooling in Colombia: Evidence from a Randomized Natural Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1535-1558, December.
    7. Claude Diebolt & Audrey-Rose Menard & Faustine Perrin, 2016. "Behind the Fertility-Education Nexus: What Triggered the French Development Process?," Working Papers 03-16, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC).
    8. Markus Lampe & Paul Sharp, 2013. "Tariffs and income: a time series analysis for 24 countries," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 7(3), pages 207-235, September.
    9. Timothy W. Guinnane, 2011. "The Historical Fertility Transition: A Guide for Economists," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(3), pages 589-614, September.
    10. Romain Wacziarg & Karen Horn Welch, 2008. "Trade Liberalization and Growth: New Evidence," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 22(2), pages 187-231, June.
    11. Petia Topalova, 2010. "Factor Immobility and Regional Impacts of Trade Liberalization: Evidence on Poverty from India," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(4), pages 1-41, October.
    12. Henriksen, Ingrid & Lampe, Markus & Sharp, Paul, 2011. "The role of technology and institutions for growth: Danish creameries in the late nineteenth century," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(03), pages 475-493, December.
    13. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Lafourcade, Miren & Thisse, Jacques-François & Toutain, Jean-Claude, 2011. "The rise and fall of spatial inequalities in France: A long-run perspective," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 243-271, April.
    14. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2006. "Globalization and the Gains From Variety," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(2), pages 541-585.
    15. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1976. "Child Endowments and the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages 143-162, August.
    16. Oded Galor & Andrew Mountford, 2008. "Trading Population for Productivity: Theory and Evidence," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(4), pages 1143-1179.
    17. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Amit Kumar Khandelwal & Nina Pavcnik & Petia Topalova, 2010. "Imported Intermediate Inputs and Domestic Product Growth: Evidence from India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(4), pages 1727-1767.
    18. repec:ucp:ecdecc:doi:10.1086/698306 is not listed on IDEAS
    19. Jacks, David S., 2006. "New results on the tariff growth paradox," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(02), pages 205-230, August.
    20. David S Jacks & Krishna Pendakur, 2010. "Global Trade and the Maritime Transport Revolution," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(4), pages 745-755, November.
    21. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1980. "Testing the Quantity-Quality Fertility Model: The Use of Twins as a Natural Experiment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 227-240, January.
    22. Goodwin, Barry K. & Grennes, Thomas J. & Craig, Lee A., 2002. "Mechanical Refrigeration and the Integration of Perishable Commodity Markets," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 154-182, April.
    23. Sicsic, Pierre, 1992. "City-Farm Wage Gaps in Late Nineteenth-Century France," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 52(03), pages 675-695, September.
    24. Gary S. Becker, 1960. "An Economic Analysis of Fertility," NBER Chapters,in: Demographic and Economic Change in Developed Countries, pages 209-240 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Sascha Becker & Francesco Cinnirella & Ludger Woessmann, 2010. "The trade-off between fertility and education: evidence from before the demographic transition," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 177-204, September.
    26. Joshua Angrist & Victor Lavy & Analia Schlosser, 2010. "Multiple Experiments for the Causal Link between the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(4), pages 773-824, October.
    27. Ingrid Henriksen & Kevin H. O'Rourke, 2005. "Incentives, technology and the shift to year-round dairying in late nineteenth-century Denmark -super-1," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 58(3), pages 520-554, August.
    28. Justin Wolfers, 2006. "Did Unilateral Divorce Laws Raise Divorce Rates? A Reconciliation and New Results," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1802-1820, December.
    29. Nye, John Vincent, 1991. "The Myth of Free-Trade Britain and Fortress France: Tariffs and Trade in the Nineteenth Century," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 51(01), pages 23-46, March.
    30. Guillaume Daudin & Raphaël Franck & Hillel Rapoport, 2018. "Can internal migration foster the convergence in regional fertility rates? Evidence from 19th century France," Post-Print hal-01830768, HAL.
    31. Hoyt Bleakley & Fabian Lange, 2009. "Chronic Disease Burden and the Interaction of Education, Fertility, and Growth," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 52-65, February.
    32. de la Croix, David & Perrin, Faustine, 2018. "How far can economic incentives explain the French fertility and education transition?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 221-245.
    33. repec:cai:popine:popu_p1975_30n1_0122 is not listed on IDEAS
    34. Chakraborty, Tanika, 2015. "Trade Liberalization in a Traditional Society: Implications for Relative Female Survival," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 158-170.
    35. Weir, David R., 1984. "Life Under Pressure: France and England, 1670–1870," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 44(01), pages 27-47, March.
    36. Bairoch, Paul, 1972. "Free trade and European economic development in the 19th century," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 211-245, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education; fertility; protectionism; unified growth theory; France;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:bfr:banfra:690. 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: (Michael brassart). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/bdfgvfr.html .

    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.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with 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.