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Parents' Desire to Make Equal Inter Vivos Transfers

  • Elin Halvorsen
  • Thor Olav Thoresen
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    This study argues that parents have a desire for dividing equally between their children, and that this motive applies to transfers of gifts inter vivos. We suggest that the equal division motive competes with traditional altruism: support to the child or the children with greatest needs. When parents are drawn between these two ambitions, the degree of income compensation should be stronger in one-child families and we expect the altruism motive to dominate the equal division desire at low levels of recipients’ income. We find support for both these hypotheses, when analysing Norwegian data for inter vivos transfers behaviour. The data include information about stated attitudes towards transfers among the parents, which also support the equal division motive.

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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2008/wp-cesifo-2008-11/cesifo1_wp2468.pdf
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    Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2468.

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    Date of creation: 2008
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    Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2468
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    10. Ernesto Villanueva, 2002. "Parental altruism under imperfect information: Theory and evidence," Economics Working Papers 650, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
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    24. Donald Cox & Bruce E. Hansen & Emmanuel Jimenez, 1997. "How Responsive are Private Transfers to Income? Evidence from a Laissez-Faire Economy," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 341., Boston College Department of Economics, revised 01 Dec 1999.
    25. McGarry, Kathleen, 1999. "Inter vivos transfers and intended bequests," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(3), pages 321-351, September.
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    27. Dunn, Thomas A. & Phillips, John W., 1997. "The timing and division of parental transfers to children," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 135-137, February.
    28. Kathleen McGarry, 2000. "Testing Parental Altruism: Implications of a Dynamic Model," NBER Working Papers 7593, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    29. PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "The role of gift and estate transfers in the United States and in Europe," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1606, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
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