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A Model of Trickle Down Through Learning

  • K Blackburn
  • N Bose

This paper presents an analysis of income distribution based on an overlapping generations model of imperfect capital markets, technological non-convexities and information acquisition. Heterogeneous, altruistic agents apply for loans from financial intermediaries to undertake risky investment projects. Borrowing is prohibited below a critical level of wealth that depends on agents' evaluation of risk which is updated over time according to the arrival of new information. This process of learning governs the transition of lineage wealth and, with it, the dynamics of income distribution. In general, limiting outcomes depend on initial conditions that determine the extent to which class divisions persist in multiple steady state equilibria. Such divisions may vanish if the the initial distribution satisfies certain criteria.

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File URL: http://www.socialsciences.manchester.ac.uk/medialibrary/cgbcr/discussionpapers/dpcgbcr6.pdf
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Paper provided by Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester in its series Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series with number 06.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:man:cgbcrp:06
Contact details of provider: Postal: Manchester M13 9PL
Phone: (0)161 275 4868
Fax: (0)161 275 4812
Web page: http://www.socialsciences.manchester.ac.uk/subjects/economics/our-research/centre-for-growth-and-business-cycle-research/

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  1. Alberto Alesina & Dani Rodrik, 1991. "Distributive Politics and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Acemoglu, Daron & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 1997. "Was Prometheus Unbound by Chance? Risk, Diversification, and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 709-51, August.
  3. Galor, Oded & Zeira, Joseph, 1993. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(1), pages 35-52, January.
  4. Piketty, Thomas, 1997. "The Dynamics of the Wealth Distribution and the Interest Rate with Credit Rationing," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(2), pages 173-89, April.
  5. Benabou, R., 1992. "Heterogeneity, Stratification, and Growth," Working papers 93-4, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  6. Steven N. Durlauf, 1995. "Neighborhood Feedbacks, Endogenous Stratification, and Income Inequality," Working Papers 95-07-061, Santa Fe Institute.
  7. Fernandez, R. & Rogerson, R., 1992. "Income Distribution, Communities and the Quality of Public Education: A Policy Analysis," Papers 1, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  8. Jovanovic, B. & Nyarko, Y., 1996. "Learning by Doing and the Choice of Technology," Working Papers 96-25, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. Atkinson, A B, 1997. "Bringing Income Distribution in from the Cold," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(441), pages 297-321, March.
  10. Robert Wilson, 1975. "Informational Economies of Scale," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 6(1), pages 184-195, Spring.
  11. Lang, William W. & Nakamura, Leonard I., 1990. "The dynamics of credit markets in a model with learning," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 305-318, October.
  12. Banerjee, Abhijit V & Newman, Andrew F, 1993. "Occupational Choice and the Process of Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 274-98, April.
  13. Perotti, Roberto, 1993. "Political Equilibrium, Income Distribution, and Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 755-76, October.
  14. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1994. "Is Inequality Harmful for Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 600-621, June.
  15. Andreoni, James, 1989. "Giving with Impure Altruism: Applications to Charity and Ricardian Equivalence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1447-58, December.
  16. Aghion, Philippe & Bolton, Patrick, 1997. "A Theory of Trickle-Down Growth and Development," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(2), pages 151-72, April.
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