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Informality, Saving and Wealth Inequality

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  • Catalina Granda

    ()

  • Franz Hamann

    ()

Abstract

The informal sector is an extensive phenomenon in developing countries. While some of its implications have drawn considerable attention in the literature, one relatively unexplored aspect has to do with the saving patterns of workers and firms and how these might influence aggregate savings and wealth inequality. In this paper, we aim to fill that gap by examining both entrepreneurs' and workers' choices regarding whether to perform informally and regarding asset accumulation. Specifically, we build an occupational choice model wherein saving is primarily motivated by precautionary considerations. The model features labor and capital market segmentation, and is calibrated to replicate the saving rates, wealth inequality and composition of occupations across the formal and informal sectors of Colombia. Computational experiments further allow us to analyze the effects of highly debated formalization policies on wealth redistribution and promotion of saving and entrepreneurship. Alternative frameworks are finally considered.

Suggested Citation

  • Catalina Granda & Franz Hamann, 2015. "Informality, Saving and Wealth Inequality," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 012621, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
  • Handle: RePEc:col:000094:012621
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Cited by:

    1. Alfredo Schclarek & Mauricio Caggia, 2015. "Household Saving and Labor Informality: The Case of Chile," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6946, Inter-American Development Bank.
    2. Carlos A. Arango-Arango & Héctor M. Zárate-Solano & Nicolás F. Suárez-Ariza, 2017. "Determinantes del Acceso, Uso y Aceptación de Pagos Electrónicos en Colombia," Borradores de Economia 999, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    3. Catalina Granda & Franz Hamann & Cesar E. Tamayo, 2017. "Credit and Saving Constraints in General Equilibrium: Evidence from Survey Data," Borradores de Economia 1002, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    4. repec:chb:bcchec:v:20:y:2017:i:3:p:052-080 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Informality; wealth inequality; saving; occupational choice models.;

    JEL classification:

    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • E26 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Informal Economy; Underground Economy
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements

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