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Financial Development and the Distribution of Income in Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Canavire Bacarreza, Gustavo J

    ()

    (Universidad EAFIT)

  • Rioja, Felix

    ()

    (Georgia State University)

One of the central concerns in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) has been the reduction of poverty and inequality so prevalent in the continent. Using large world samples, the literature has found that financial development increases economic growth, increases the income of the poor, and reduces inequality. This paper studies the effects of financial development on the whole distribution of income in LAC. We find that the income of the poorest quintile has not been affected by expansion in the financial system. However, we do find that financial development has had a disproportionate positive effect on the incomes of the second, third and fourth quintiles. We also find some evidence for the Greenwood-Jovanovic (1991) hypothesis that this positive effect only begins after a country crosses a certain economic development threshold.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3796.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Well-Being and Social Policy, 2009, 5 (1), 1-18
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3796
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  1. Greenwood, J. & Jovanovic, B., 1990. "Financial Development, Growth, And The Distribution Of Income," University of Western Ontario, The Centre for the Study of International Economic Relations Working Papers 9002, University of Western Ontario, The Centre for the Study of International Economic Relations.
  2. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad, 2005. "Reaching out : access to and use of banking services across countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3754, The World Bank.
  3. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  4. Ross Levine, 2004. "Finance and Growth: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 10766, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. George R. G. Clarke & Lixin Colin Xu & Heng-fu Zou, 2011. "Finance and Income Inequality: What Do the Data Tell Us?," CEMA Working Papers 489, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
  6. Windmeijer, Frank, 2005. "A finite sample correction for the variance of linear efficient two-step GMM estimators," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 25-51, May.
  7. Patrick Honohan, 2004. "Financial development, growth, and poverty: how close are the links?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3203, The World Bank.
  8. Rioja, Felix & Valev, Neven, 2004. "Does one size fit all?: a reexamination of the finance and growth relationship," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 429-447, August.
  9. Bourguignon, Francois & Verdier, Thierry, 2000. "Oligarchy, democracy, inequality and growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 285-313, August.
  10. Richard Blundell & Steve Bond, 1995. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," IFS Working Papers W95/17, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  11. Oded Galor & Joseph Zeira, 2013. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Working Papers 2013-12, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  12. Hongyi Li & Lyn Squire & Heng-fu Zou, 1998. "Explaining International and Intertemporal Variations in Income Inequality," CEMA Working Papers 73, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
  13. Jalilian, Hossein & Kirkpatrick, Colin, 2002. "Financial Development and Poverty Reduction in Developing Countries," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(2), pages 97-108, April.
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