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Fertility and public debt

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  • Fanti Luciano e Spataro Luca

Abstract

Public debt and fertility are two issues of major concern in the current debate about economic policy, especially in countries with below replacement fertility and large debt. In this paper we show that public debt is in general harmful for fertility, in that debt issuing almost ever crowds out fertility. The relationship is reversed only if debt is sufficiently low and the share of capital (labor) in the economy is sufficiently low (high). Hence, our analysis would recommend that developed, capital intensive economies (such as OECD countries) aiming at a fertility recovery should reduce national debt, while developing, labor intensive economies, aiming at reducing fertility, should increase (reduce) national debt only if they are debt virtuous (vicious).

Suggested Citation

  • Fanti Luciano e Spataro Luca, 2009. "Fertility and public debt," Discussion Papers 2009/89, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:pie:dsedps:2009/89
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    File URL: http://www.ec.unipi.it/documents/Ricerca/papers/2009-89.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Holger Strulik, 2003. "Mortality, the Trade-off between Child Quality and Quantity, and Demo-economic Development," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(4), pages 499-520, November.
    2. Paul A. Samuelson, 1958. "An Exact Consumption-Loan Model of Interest with or without the Social Contrivance of Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 467-467.
    3. Galor, Oded & Weil, David N, 1996. "The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 374-387, June.
    4. Tetsuo Ono, 2003. "Social security policy with public debt in an aging economy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 16(2), pages 363-387, May.
    5. Gertler, Mark, 1999. "Government debt and social security in a life-cycle economy," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 61-110, June.
    6. Michael Brauninger, 2005. "The Budget Deficit, Public Debt, and Endogenous Growth," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 7(5), pages 827-840, December.
    7. Strulik, Holger, 1999. "Demographic Transition, Stagnation, and Demoeconomic Cycles in a Model for the Less Developed Economy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 397-413, April.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Want more babies? Reduce public debt
      by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2009-10-28 19:32:00

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    Cited by:

    1. Luca Spataro & Luciano Fanti, 2013. "From Malthusian to Modern fertility: When intergenerational transfers matter," Discussion Papers 2013/163, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.
    2. Luca Spataro & Luciano Fanti, 2011. "The Optimal Level of Debt in an OLG Model with Endogenous Fertility," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(3), pages 351-369, August.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    overlapping generations; endogenous fertility; debt.;

    JEL classification:

    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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