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Lurking in the Cities: Urbanization and the Informal Economy

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  • Ceyhun Elgin
  • Cem Oyvat

Abstract

This study investigates the empirical relationship between the level of urbanization and size of the informal economy using cross-country datasets proxying GDP and employment shares of urban informal sector. Our estimation results indicate that there is an inverted-U relationship between informality and the level of urbanization. That is, the share of the informal sector grows in the early phases of urbanization due to several pull and push factors; however, it tends to fall in the latter phases. We also show that factors like level of taxes, trade openness, and institutional quality tend to affect the size of the informal economy.
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Suggested Citation

  • Ceyhun Elgin & Cem Oyvat, 2013. "Lurking in the Cities: Urbanization and the Informal Economy," Working Papers 2013/10, Bogazici University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:bou:wpaper:2013/10
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    13. repec:hrv:faseco:33078210 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Cited by:

    1. Mohamed El Hedi Arouri & Adel Ben Youssef & Cuong Nguyen-Viet & Agnès Soucat, 2014. "Effects of urbanization on economic growth and human capital formation in Africa," Working Papers halshs-01068271, HAL.
    2. Saafi Sami & Farhat Abdeljelil & Haj Mohamed Meriem Bel, 2015. "Testing the relationships between shadow economy and unemployment: empirical evidence from linear and nonlinear tests," Studies in Nonlinear Dynamics & Econometrics, De Gruyter, vol. 19(5), pages 585-608, December.
    3. M. Arouri & A. Ben Youssef & Ceyhun Elgin, 2014. "Informal economy in Africa: Building human capital to set the Gazelles free," Working Papers 2014/04, Bogazici University, Department of Economics.
    4. Imamoglu, Hatice, 2017. "Estimating the roles of financial sector development and international trade openness in underground economies: Evidence from the European Union," Economics Discussion Papers 2017-50, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E26 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Informal Economy; Underground Economy
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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