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Migration, Risk and the Intra-Household Allocation of Labor in El Salvador

  • Timothy J. Halliday

    ()

    (Department of Economics and John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii at Manoa)

We use panel data from El Salvador to investigate the intra-household allocation of labor as a risk-coping strategy. We show that adverse agricultural productivity shocks primarily increased male migration to the US with much smaller effects on female migration. This is consistent with the observation that the bulk of households allocated no women to the agricultural sector. These shocks also increased the number of hours that the household devoted to agricultural activities. These results do not contradict each other if one considers the possibility that the shocks had non-monotonic effects on shadow wages during the survey period. In contrast, damage sustained from the 2001 earthquakes exclusively stunted female migration. We argue that the reasons for this were that the earthquakes increased the demand for home production and that most men in our data are not engaged in domestic production at all.

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File URL: http://www.economics.hawaii.edu/research/workingpapers/WP_07-19R.pdf
File Function: First version, 2007
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Paper provided by University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 200719.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 08 Aug 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hai:wpaper:200719
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  1. Browning, M. & Bourguignon, F. & Chiappori, P.A. & Lechene, V., 1992. "Incomes and Outcomes: A structural Model of Intra-Household Allocation," DELTA Working Papers 92-23, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  2. Kristin Mammen & Christina Paxson, 2000. "Women's Work and Economic Development," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 141-164, Fall.
  3. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Stark, Oded, 1989. "Consumption Smoothing, Migration, and Marriage: Evidence from Rural India," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 905-26, August.
  4. Rosenzweig, Mark R. & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 1989. "Credit Market Constraints, Consumption Smoothing and the Accumulation of Durable Production Assets in Low-Income Countries: Investments in Bullocks in India," Bulletins 7487, University of Minnesota, Economic Development Center.
  5. Besley, T., 1993. "Savings, Credit and Insurance," Papers 167, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Development Studies.
  6. Paxson, Christina H, 1992. "Using Weather Variability to Estimate the Response of Savings to Transitory Income in Thailand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 15-33, March.
  7. Halliday, Timothy, 2006. "Migration, Risk, and Liquidity Constraints in El Salvador," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(4), pages 893-925, July.
  8. Chiappori, P.A., 1989. "Collective Labour Supply and Welfare," DELTA Working Papers 89-07, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  9. Esther Duflo, 2000. "Grandmothers and Granddaughters: Old Age Pension and Intra-household Allocation in South Africa," NBER Working Papers 8061, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  11. Townsend, Robert M, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in Village India," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(3), pages 539-91, May.
  12. Udry, Christopher, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in a Rural Credit Market: An Empirical Investigation in Northern Nigeria," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 495-526, July.
  13. Mark Rosenzweig & Andrew D. Foster, . "Comparative Advantage, Information and the Allocation of Workers to Tasks: Evidence from an Agricultural Labor Market," Home Pages _066, University of Pennsylvania.
  14. Dean Yang & HwaJung Choi, 2005. "Are Remittances Insurance? Evidence from Rainfall Shocks in the Philippines," Working Papers 535, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  15. Udry, Christopher, 1995. "Risk and Saving in Northern Nigeria," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1287-1300, December.
  16. Elizabeth Frankenberg & James P. Smith & Duncan Thomas, 2003. "Economic Shocks, Wealth, and Welfare," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(2).
  17. Powell, James L., 1984. "Least absolute deviations estimation for the censored regression model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 303-325, July.
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