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Corruption, Shadow Economy and Income Inequality: Evidence from Asia

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  • Kar, Saibal

    () (Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta)

  • Saha, Shrabani

    () (Edith Cowan University)

Abstract

A number of recent studies for Latin America show that as the size of the informal economy grows, corruption is less harmful to inequality. We investigate if this relationship is equally compelling for developing countries in Asia where corruption, inequality and shadow economies are considerably large. We use Panel Least Square and Fixed Effects Models for Asia to find that both 'Corruption Perception Index' and 'ICRG' index are sensitive to a number of important macroeconomic variables. We find that in the absence of the shadow economy, corruption increases inequality. However, with larger shadow economies in South Asia, the income inequality tends to fall.

Suggested Citation

  • Kar, Saibal & Saha, Shrabani, 2012. "Corruption, Shadow Economy and Income Inequality: Evidence from Asia," IZA Discussion Papers 7106, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7106
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Schneider, Friedrich, 2005. "Shadow economies around the world: what do we really know?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 598-642, September.
    2. Marjit, Sugata & Ghosh, Sudeep & Biswas, Amit, 2007. "Informality, corruption and trade reform," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 777-789, September.
    3. Axel Dreher & Friedrich Schneider, 2010. "Corruption and the shadow economy: an empirical analysis," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(1), pages 215-238, July.
    4. Marjit, Sugata, 2003. "Economic reform and informal wage--a general equilibrium analysis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 371-378, October.
    5. Hongyi Li & Lixin Colin Xu & Heng-fu Zou, 2000. "Corruption, Income Distribution, and Growth," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(2), pages 155-182, July.
    6. Antonio Andres & Carlyn Ramlogan-Dobson, 2011. "Is Corruption Really Bad for Inequality? Evidence from Latin America," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(7), pages 959-976.
    7. Dabla-Norris, Era & Gradstein, Mark & Inchauste, Gabriela, 2008. "What causes firms to hide output? The determinants of informality," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 1-27, February.
    8. Schneider, Friedrich G., 2007. "Shadow Economies and Corruption All Over the World: New Estimates for 145 Countries," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 1, pages 1-66.
    9. Kwabena Gyimah-Brempong & Samaria de Gyimah-Brempong, 2006. "Corruption, Growth, and Income Distribution: Are there Regional Differences?," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 245-269, August.
    10. Ulyssea, Gabriel, 2010. "Regulation of entry, labor market institutions and the informal sector," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 87-99, January.
    11. Schneider, Friedrich, 2004. "The Size of the Shadow Economies of 145 Countries all over the World: First Results over the Period 1999 to 2003," IZA Discussion Papers 1431, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    12. Sanjeev Gupta & Hamid Davoodi & Rosa Alonso-Terme, 2002. "Does corruption affect income inequality and poverty?," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 3(1), pages 23-45, March.
    13. Chaudhuri, Kausik & Schneider, Friedrich & Chattopadhyay, Sumana, 2006. "The size and development of the shadow economy: An empirical investigation from states of India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 428-443, August.
    14. Dutta, Nabamita & Kar, Saibal & Roy, Sanjukta, 2011. "Informal Sector and Corruption: An Empirical Investigation for India," IZA Discussion Papers 5579, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    15. Alberto Ades & Rafael Di Tella, 1997. "The New Economics of Corruption: a Survey and Some New Results," Political Studies, Political Studies Association, vol. 45(3), pages 496-515.
    16. Friedman, Eric & Johnson, Simon & Kaufmann, Daniel & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 2000. "Dodging the grabbing hand: the determinants of unofficial activity in 69 countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 459-493, June.
    17. Saha, Shrabani & Gounder, Rukmani & Su, Jen-Je, 2009. "The interaction effect of economic freedom and democracy on corruption: A panel cross-country analysis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 173-176, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:spr:lsprsc:v:10:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s12076-017-0192-z is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:spr:soinre:v:136:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-016-1534-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Heshmati, Almas & Kim, Jungsuk, 2014. "A Survey of the Role of Fiscal Policy in Addressing Income Inequality, Poverty Reduction and Inclusive Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 8119, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Meltem Ucal & Alfred Albert Haug & Mehmet Hüseyin Bilgin, 2016. "Income inequality and FDI: evidence with Turkish data," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 48(11), pages 1030-1045, March.
    5. Herzer, Dierk & Nunnenkamp, Peter, 2012. "FDI and health in developed economies: A panel cointegration analysis," Kiel Working Papers 1756, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    6. Herzer, Dierk & Nunnenkamp, Peter, 2012. "The effect of foreign aid on income inequality: Evidence from panel cointegration," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 245-255.
    7. Riccardo Leoncini, 2017. "Innovation, inequality and the skill premium," SPRU Working Paper Series 2017-16, SPRU - Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    corruption; inequality; shadow economy; panel data; South Asia;

    JEL classification:

    • J48 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Particular Labor Markets; Public Policy
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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