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Oh Brother! Testing the Etiology of Sibling Effects Using External Cash Transfers

Listed author(s):
  • James Manley


    (Department of Economics, Towson University)

  • Lia Fernald

    (School of Public Health, UC Berkeley)

  • Paul Gertler

    (Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley)

Siblings can slow child development, but distinguishing intrinsic from economic circumstances has been more difficult. The grants of the Oportunidades Mexican welfare program allo w us to test this linkage. We investigate whether transfers increase firstborn characteristics faster than other children�s characteristics, and whether the observed negative effects of being part of a larger set of siblings stem from having to share household resources. We find that firstborn children get larger physical and verbal benefits from transfers, but beha vioral improvements are less tied to cash than to program participation. Children in larger households seem resource constrained; there, transfers have larger impacts.

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File Function: First version, 2012
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Paper provided by Towson University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2012-03.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2012
Date of revision: Mar 2012
Handle: RePEc:tow:wpaper:2012-03
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Towson, Maryland 21252-0001

Phone: 410-704-2959
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