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Fertility Choice and Financial Development

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  • Valerio Filoso
  • Erasmo Papagni

Abstract

We study the consequences of broader access to credit and to capital markets on household's decisions over the number of children. In a life-cycle model of choice with forward and backward caring between parents and children, we analyze the effects of relaxing adults' borrowing constrains and broadening the opportunities for financial investment, and show how the sign of these effects depends on the role of children as a normal or inferior good in parents' preferences. We estimate the quantitative implications of our theoretical model on data from 145 countries over the period 1980-2006. Empirical results indicate that improved access to credit reduces fertility in poor countries and increases fertility in high-income countries. The effect of the development of capital markets on the number of children is negative in low-income countries and positive in the rich. When the analysis includes public pensions the main results remain the same. We also estimate the effect of the real interest rate, which proves significant and negative.

Suggested Citation

  • Valerio Filoso & Erasmo Papagni, 2011. "Fertility Choice and Financial Development," EERI Research Paper Series EERI_RP_2011_02, Economics and Econometrics Research Institute (EERI), Brussels.
  • Handle: RePEc:eei:rpaper:eeri_rp_2011_02
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    1. Financial development and fertility
      by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2010-11-27 00:42:00

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    3. Donou-Adonsou, Ficawoyi, 2022. "The effects of health conditions on financial sector development," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 114(C).
    4. Muhammad Zakaria & Bashir Ahmed Fida & Saquib Yousaf Janjua & Syed Jawad Hussain Shahzad, 2017. "Fertility and Financial Development in South Asia," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 133(2), pages 645-668, September.
    5. Aeggarchat Sirisankanan, 2020. "Credit constraints and the trade‐off between family size and children's investment in Thailand," Asian-Pacific Economic Literature, Asia Pacific School of Economics and Government, The Australian National University, vol. 34(2), pages 133-151, November.
    6. Awaworyi Churchill, Sefa & Smyth, Russell & Trinh, Trong-Anh & Yew, Siew Ling, 2022. "Local crime and fertility," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 200(C), pages 312-331.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Fertility; Financial Markets Development; Old-Age Security.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • G1 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets

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