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Tests of Income Pooling in Household Decisions

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  • Valerie Lechene
  • Orazio Attanasio

Abstract

Using the Progresa data from Mexico, we investigate intra-household decision making using a variety of outcomes. We exploit both the experimental nature and the (short) panel dimension of the data to measure the impact of exogenous changes in the intra-household distribution of resources on household decisions. We test for global pooling of resources within households, which would correspond to the unitary model of household decision making. We also exploit a set of questions about power and the decision making process in the household to investigate aspects of strategic interactions between household members. Our findings confirm previous rejections of income pooling. We also cannot reject that the wife`s relative income share is a significant determinant of the wife`s decision making power in the household, with a higher share of income associated with more decision making power.

Suggested Citation

  • Valerie Lechene & Orazio Attanasio, 2002. "Tests of Income Pooling in Household Decisions," Economics Series Working Papers 106, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:106
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    File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/working_papers/paper106.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Duncan Thomas, 1990. "Intra-Household Resource Allocation: An Inferential Approach," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(4), pages 635-664.
    2. François Bourguignon & Martin Browning & Pierre-André Chiappori & Valérie Lechene, 1993. "Intra Household Allocation of Consumption: A Model and some Evidence from French Data," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 29, pages 137-156.
    3. Phipps, Shelley A & Burton, Peter S, 1998. "What's Mine Is Yours? The Influence of Male and Female Incomes on Patterns of Household Expenditure," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(260), pages 599-613, November.
    4. Lundberg, S.J. & Pollak, R.A. & Wales, T.J., 1994. "Do Husbands and Wives Pool Their Resources? Evidence from U.K. Child Benefit," Working Papers 94-6, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    social welfare program; intra-household allocation; unitary model;

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis

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