nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2016‒03‒29
thirty papers chosen by

  1. Impact of climate change and aquatic salinization on fish habitats and poor communities in southwest coastal Bangladesh and Bangladesh Sundarbans By Dasgupta,Susmita; Huq,Mainul; Mustafa,Md. Golam; Sobhan,Md Istiak; Wheeler,David R.
  2. COMESA’s Revealed Comparative Advantage in Common Agricultural Commodities By Sukati, Mphumuzi
  3. Legitimizing farmers' new knowledge, learning and practices through communicative action: Application of an agro-environmental policy By Jean Pierre Del Corso; Charilaos Kephaliacos; Gaël Plumecocq
  4. Use of Contracts by Prairie Agricultural Producers By Frasa, Stefanie; Carlberg, Jared; Hogan, Robert
  5. Links between Tenure Security and Food Security in Poor Agrarian Economies: Causal Linkages and Policy Implications By Holden, Stein T.; Ghebru, Hosaena
  6. How does consumer knowledge affect environmentally sustainable choices? Evidence from a cross-country latent class analysis of food labels By Peschel, Anne; Grebitus, Carola; Steiner, Bodo; Veeman, Michele
  7. An initiative to link between research and support for young farmers who access the Sub-measure 6.1 - RDP 2014-2020 By Ursu, Ana
  8. Sacrificing Cereals for Crude: Has oil discovery slowed agriculture growth in Ghana? By Ackah, Ishmael
  9. Does land titling promote women's empowerment? Evidence from Nepal By Daniela Campus
  10. The revival of the"cash versus food"debate : new evidence for an old quandary ? By Gentilini,Ugo
  11. Land measurement bias and its empirical implications : evidence from a validation exercise By Dillon,Andrew S.; Gourlay,Sydney; Mcgee,Kevin Robert; Oseni,Gbemisola O.
  12. Global Supply Chains and Trade Policy By Emily J. Blanchard; Chad P. Bown; Robert C. Johnson
  13. Economic Evaluation of Governor Branstad's Water Quality Initiative By Dermot J. Hayes; Catherine L. Kling; John D. Lawrence
  14. Horticultural exports and food security in developing countries By VAN DEN BROECK, Goedele; MAERTENS, Miet
  15. Incentivizing Nutritious Diets: A Field Experiment of Relative Price Changes and How They are Framed By John Cawley; Andrew S. Hanks; David R. Just; Brian Wansink
  16. Economic valuation of coastal and marine ecosystem services in the 21st century: an overview from a management perspective By Cati Torres; Nick Hanley
  17. Sunflower: A high value crop? By Mattas, Konstadinos; Tsakiridou, Efthimia; Michailidis, Anastasios; Karelakis, Christos
  18. An Illiquid Market in the Desert: The Role of Interest Groups in Shaping Environmental Regulation By Eric C. Edwards; Oscar Cristi; Gonzalo Edwards; Gary D. Libecap
  19. Determinants of Borrowing and Households’ Risk of Credit in Rural Area in Niger By Ahamadou MAICHANOU
  20. Access to Short-term Credit and Consumption Smoothing within the Paycycle By Zaki, Mary
  21. Mangroves as protection from storm surges in a changing climate By Blankespoor,Brian; Dasgupta,Susmita; Lange,Glenn-Marie
  22. How is Volatility in Commodity Markets Linked to Oil Price Shocks? By Maryam Ahmadi; Niaz Bashiri Behmiri; Matteo Manera
  23. What explains agricultural price movements ? By Baffes,John; Haniotis,Tassos
  24. Special and Differential Treatment for Developing Countries By Ornelas, Emanuel
  25. Sovereign spreads in emerging economies: do natural resources matter? By Magali Dauvin
  26. An Analysis of Introducing Unspawned Oysters in Japan Using a Contingent Valuation Method and Analytic Hierarchy Process By Wakamatsu, Hiroki; Miyata, Tsutom; Kamiyama, Ryutaro
  27. Estimation of climate change damage functions for 140 regions in the GTAP9 database By Roberto Roson; Martina Sartori
  28. Contracting out the Last-Mile of Service Delivery: Subsidized Food Distribution in Indonesia By Abhijit Banerjee; Rema Hanna; Jordan C. Kyle; Benjamin A. Olken; Sudarno Sumarto
  29. Carbon Storage and Bioenergy: Using Forests for Climate Mitigation By Alice Favero; Robert Mendelsohn; Brent Sohngen
  30. Coasean Bargaining to Address Environmental Externalities By Gary D. Libecap

  1. By: Dasgupta,Susmita; Huq,Mainul; Mustafa,Md. Golam; Sobhan,Md Istiak; Wheeler,David R.
    Abstract: Fisheries constitute an important source of livelihoods for tens of thousands of poor people in the southwest coastal region of Bangladesh living near the UNESCO Heritage Sundarbans mangrove forest, and they supply a significant portion of protein for millions. Among the various threats fisheries in the southwest coastal region and Sundarbans mangrove forest will face because of climate change, adverse impacts from increased aquatic salinity caused by sea level rise have been identified as one of the greatest challenges. This paper focuses on 83 fish species consumed by poor households in the region. Using the salinity tolerance range for each species, 27 alternative scenarios of climate change in 2050 were investigated to assess the possible impacts of climate change and sea level rise on aquatic salinity, fish species habitats, and the poor communities that consume the affected fish species. The results provide striking evidence that projected aquatic salinization may have an especially negative impact on poor households in the region. The estimates indicate that areas with poor populations that lose species are about six times more prevalent than areas gaining species.
    Keywords: Ecosystems and Natural Habitats,Regional Economic Development,Fisheries and Aquaculture,Wildlife Resources,Biodiversity
    Date: 2016–03–10
  2. By: Sukati, Mphumuzi
    Abstract: The paper undertakes an analysis of Revealed Comparative Advantage (RCA) for common agricultural commodities in the COMESA Region. The aim of the analysis is firstly, to determine the level of agro-processing in the region; and secondly, in support of the COMESA industrial policy and strategy, to identify commodities countries could focus on in setting up agro-food industries. To address these two issues, RCA is determined for selected agricultural commodities, which are divided into raw/semi processed and highly processed food stuff. Results reveal that many COMESA Member States show strong RCA in raw or semi-processed agricultural commodities with little or no corresponding RCA in highly processed derivatives of those commodities. In general, very few countries in the COMESA region show strong RCA in highly processed and diversified food commodities. This means that there is still a large scope for agro-processing, especially using the abundant traded raw materials. Countries can focus on agro-industries where they show strong RCA in the corresponding raw material base or precursor. Agro-industrialization can help reverse the negative trade balance in processed food commodities that the region is currently experiencing.
    Keywords: RCA, Agro-processing, Agro-industries, COMESA
    JEL: F15 O11 O13
    Date: 2016–03–11
  3. By: Jean Pierre Del Corso (LEREPS - Laboratoire d'Etude et de Recherche sur l'Economie, les Politiques et les Systèmes Sociaux - Institut d'Études Politiques [IEP] - Toulouse - UT1 - Université Toulouse 1 Capitole - UT2 - Université Toulouse 2 - École Nationale de Formation Agronomique - ENFA); Charilaos Kephaliacos (LEREPS - Laboratoire d'Etude et de Recherche sur l'Economie, les Politiques et les Systèmes Sociaux - Institut d'Études Politiques [IEP] - Toulouse - UT1 - Université Toulouse 1 Capitole - UT2 - Université Toulouse 2 - École Nationale de Formation Agronomique - ENFA); Gaël Plumecocq (AGIR - AGrosystèmes et développement terrItoRial - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA), LEREPS - Laboratoire d'Etude et de Recherche sur l'Economie, les Politiques et les Systèmes Sociaux - Institut d'Études Politiques [IEP] - Toulouse - UT1 - Université Toulouse 1 Capitole - UT2 - Université Toulouse 2 - École Nationale de Formation Agronomique - ENFA)
    Abstract: This article examines the role of communication in the process that guides economic actors to integrate the moral obligations implied by adopting sustainability principles in their action choices and to reexamine their practices. We analyze two approaches to implementing agro-environmental measures that encourage farmers to preserve water resources. Verbal interactions between farmers and agricultural advisors, who are part of these policy programs, are analyzed drawing on Jürgen Habermas's theory of communicative action. The discourse analysis used here shows that communicative action encouraged participants to reexamine the validity of the technical, experiential, and normative knowledge that legitimized their reasons for acting. This study brings to light the fact that, in the context of a business primarily oriented towards making a profit, committing to sustainable development does not only operate in technical terms; such a commitment also requires collective validation of the effectiveness of alternative farming practices.
    Keywords: Agricultural advice , Communicative action theory , Agricultural innovations , Learning processes , Agro-environmental policy
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Frasa, Stefanie; Carlberg, Jared; Hogan, Robert
    Abstract: The objective of the research reported in this paper was to assess current trends in the use of contracts by agricultural producers in the Canadian Prairies and determine the factors affecting farmers’ contracting behaviour. Two surveys – one a mailout and one online that yielded a combined 587 usable responses – were used to gather data pertaining to producers’ use of marketing contracts, production contracts, and technology use agreements (TUAs). It was found that such contracts are used frequently by farmers and generally well‐understood. Farmers also indicated they mostly believe they are fairly treated by contracts, but that contracting firms’ rights are carefully protected by contract terms. Econometric analysis indicated that a farmer’s decision to contract is affected by farm type, the mix of crops grown by the operation, net income including off‐farm income, how long the respondent has been farming, and their level of risk aversion. A second econometric model discovered that a farmer’s previous use of contracts, the amount of the contract that the respondent actually reads, the ease with which a contract can be understood, the fact that producers are not indifferent to the existence of enforcement mechanisms, the presence of a dispute settlement mechanism, whether the contracting firm determines inputs to be used, and the provision of a fieldman exert statistically significant effects on the types of contracts used.
    Keywords: contracts, Producer surveys, adoption, Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Crop Production/Industries, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, Risk and Uncertainty, D23 Q12,
    Date: 2015–12–20
  5. By: Holden, Stein T. (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences); Ghebru, Hosaena (International Food Policy Research Institute)
    Abstract: Population growth leads to growing land scarcity and landlessness in poor agrarian economies. Many of these also face severe climate risks that may increase in the future. Tenure security is important for food security in such countries and at the same time threatened by social instability that further accelerate rural-urban and international migration. Provision of secure property rights with low-cost methods that create investment incentives can lead to land use intensification and improved food security. Pro-active policies that engage youth in establishment of sustainable livelihoods hold promise. Social and political stability are essential for tenure security and food security.
    Keywords: Tenure security; food security; land scarcity; investment incentives; tenure reforms; youth migration
    JEL: D12 D13 Q15 Q18
    Date: 2016–03–07
  6. By: Peschel, Anne; Grebitus, Carola; Steiner, Bodo; Veeman, Michele
    Abstract: This paper examines consumers' knowledge and lifestyle profiles and preferences regarding two environmentally labelled food staples, potatoes and ground beef. Data from online choice experiments conducted in Canada and Germany are analyzed through latent class choice modelling to identify the influence of consumer knowledge (subjective and objective knowledge as well as usage experience) on environmentally sustainable choices. We find that irrespective of product or country under investigation, high subjective and objective knowledge levels drive environmentally sustainable food choices. Subjective knowledge was found to be more important in this context. Usage experience had relatively little impact on environmentally sustainable choices. Our results suggest that about 20 % of consumers in both countries are ready to adopt footprint labels in their food choices. Another 10 - 20% could be targeted by enhancing subjective knowledge, for example through targeted marketing campaigns.
    Keywords: carbon footprint; food; latent class analysis; objective knowledge; subjective knowledge; water footprint
    JEL: D12 M31 Q51
    Date: 2016–02–27
  7. By: Ursu, Ana
    Abstract: The paper highlights the involvement of field research in achieving a model farm calves for fattening and associated with basic fodder popularizing information and for practical use, which is necessary for young farmers first install the head / manager of a holding in a production animal competitive. This study is based on a business plan prepared according to the Applicant's Guide for sub-measure 6.1 of the RDP 2014-2020, and meetings with young farmers. Development of a forage-based livestock farms related constitutes an advantage for farmers resulting from the combination of two types of activities in that young farmer could sell his crop production on the farm, thus reducing cost production of animal products by 60%. In the same time, the young farmer can judiciously organize his activities in both farms livestock and crops plant having a rigorous and permanent control, so that it can intervene if there are any financial losses during the production process. The results reveal that young farmers could benefit from improved access to information, but there is no real benefit assessment because of the small number of relevant surveys.
    Keywords: Research, model, farm, sub, young farmer
    JEL: D24 O12 Q12 Q18 R11
    Date: 2015–11–20
  8. By: Ackah, Ishmael
    Abstract: This study applies the quadratic hill climbing model, stepwise regression, and a dynamic generalized method of moments to investigate the relationship between oil rents and agriculture growth in Ghana. Agriculture, once considered the backbone of Ghana’s economy recorded a reduction of its contribution to GDP from 45% in 1992 to 22% in 2013 and a growth rate of 0.04 in 2015. The results from all models confirm an inverse relationship between oil rents and agriculture output. Further, availability of agriculture land is a major driver of agriculture output. Since oil resources are exhaustible and oil revenues are volatile, the study recommends a sustainable investment plan that emphasis on diversification, private investment in the agriculture value chain, and productive land use, and encourages higher percentage of revenues into agriculture.
    Keywords: Oil revenues, Agriculture, Ghana, Oil Production
    JEL: Q1 Q10 Q4 Q43 Q48 Q5
    Date: 2016–03–10
  9. By: Daniela Campus
    Abstract: Women's land titling is recognized as an important tool to promote women's empowerment in agriculture, as well as a means to ght poverty. However, most rural women still have low access to land, despite their crucial role in the agricultural sector. This paper uses the National Demographic and Health Survey (2011) to investigate the role female land rights have in promoting their empowerment - expressed in terms of decision-making power - in Nepal. Our results demonstrate that women 's nal say within the household increases with land ownership.
    Keywords: land property rights, Nepal, empowerment, gender
    JEL: D13 J16 Q15
    Date: 2016
  10. By: Gentilini,Ugo
    Abstract: The longstanding"cash versus food"debate has received renewed attention in both research and practice. This paper reviews key issues shaping the debate and presents new evidence from randomized and quasi-experimental evaluations that deliberately compare cash and in-kind food transfers in ten developing counties. Findings show that relative effectiveness cannot be generalized: although some differences emerge in terms of food consumption and dietary diversity, average impacts tend to depend on context, specific objectives, and their measurement. Costs for cash transfers and vouchers tend to be significantly lower relative to in-kind food. Yet the consistency and robustness of methods for efficiency analyses varies greatly.
    Keywords: Safety Nets and Transfers,Food&Beverage Industry,Food Security,Nutrition,Rural Poverty Reduction
    Date: 2016–02–29
  11. By: Dillon,Andrew S.; Gourlay,Sydney; Mcgee,Kevin Robert; Oseni,Gbemisola O.
    Abstract: This paper investigates how land size measurements vary across three common land measurement methods (farmer estimated, Global Positioning System (GPS), and compass and rope), and the effect of land size measurement error on the inverse farm size relationship and input demand functions. The analysis utilizes plot-level data from the second wave of the Nigeria General Household Survey Panel, as well as a supplementary land validation survey covering a subsample of General Household Survey Panel plots. Using this data, both GPS and self-reported farmer estimates can be compared with the gold standard compass and rope measurements on the same plots. The findings indicate that GPS measurements are more reliable than farmer estimates, where self-reported measurement bias leads to over-reporting land sizes of small plots and under-reporting of large plots. The error observed across land measurement methods is nonlinear and results in biased estimates of the inverse land size relationship. Input demand functions that rely on self-reported land measures significantly underestimate the effect of land on input utilization, including fertilizer and household labor.
    Keywords: Standards and Technical Regulations,E-Business,Science Education,Rural Development Knowledge&Information Systems,Scientific Research&Science Parks
    Date: 2016–03–14
  12. By: Emily J. Blanchard; Chad P. Bown; Robert C. Johnson
    Abstract: How do global supply chain linkages modify countries' incentives to impose import protection? Are these linkages empirically important determinants of trade policy? To address these questions, we introduce supply chain linkages into a workhorse terms-of-trade model of trade policy with political economy. Theory predicts that discretionary final goods tariffs will be decreasing in the domestic content of foreign-produced final goods. Provided foreign political interests are not too strong, final goods tariffs will also be decreasing in the foreign content of domestically-produced final goods. We test these predictions using newly assembled data on bilateral applied tariffs, temporary trade barriers, and value-added contents for 14 major economies over the 1995-2009 period. We find strong support for the empirical predictions of the model. Our results imply that global supply chains matter for trade policy, both in principle and in practice.
    JEL: F1 F13 F14
    Date: 2016–01
  13. By: Dermot J. Hayes (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD); Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI)); Catherine L. Kling (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD)); John D. Lawrence
    Abstract: Governor Branstad has proposed an initiative that would significantly increase state spending on water quality. This document examines the economic costs and benefits of such a proposal. As with previous work on this topic, this economic evaluation uses the state's Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy to measure costs and research results on water quality benefits from Iowa State University's Center for Agricultural and Rural Development. In doing an economic evaluation of this type, the reader should understand these important points: 1. A calculation of Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy costs with current strategies can be determined. The costs in labor, land, machinery and supplies are all well-known factors. There are also scientifically validated studies that show the impact these remedial strategies will have on water quality. 2. While reducing nutrients in surface waters offers benefits, calculating the exact economic value is inherently complex. Few studies are available to estimate the benefits to state residents versus benefits to the nation or world. These studies are based on measures of willingness to pay for improved environmental services and quality. The measures provided here are probably conservative because they exclude those that have yet to be measured or are currently impossible to measure. Research may develop future technologies that offer similar or enhanced benefits in nutrient reduction at lower costs. For example, some agronomists believe drainage water management technologies may reduce nutrient losses and provide an economic return to producers. However, at this time we cannot include these potential opportunities because the research has yet to be done. Also, more experience with current practices and technologies will yield more benefits. The Governor's proposal would provide approximately half of the funds required to implement the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy. The rest of the funds would need to come from cost shares from landowners, the federal government, or other third party organizations (such as NGO's). Landowners might be willing to contribute because of reduced soil erosion and improved soil quality or because they prefer this program to possible future regulation. One argument for federal cost is that many of the environmental benefits would be felt downstream of Iowa to the Gulf of Mexico. The benefits of the strategy exceed the costs when these downstream benefits are included. The spending level that the Governor has proposed is approximately equal to the currently identifiable and quantifiable benefits that residents of Iowa would receive from achieving the goals of the strategy. The adoption of this voluntary strategy might also deter potential regulatory approaches. On an annualized basis, projected spending under this proposal would generate approximately $690 million in economic activity, 1,150 full-time direct employment positions and 2,800 total full-time positions. However, it should be understood that alternative projects and proposals are likely to result in similar economic activity and employment.
    Date: 2016–03
  14. By: VAN DEN BROECK, Goedele; MAERTENS, Miet
    Abstract: This article reviews the channels through which horticultural exports affect food security in developing countries. We describe the trends in horticultural export chains and investigate the macro- and micro-level effects on the different components of food security, including availability, access, utilization and stability. The available evidence suggests that horticultural exports contribute to food security in developing countries, particularly through the development of rural labor markets and female wage employment in companies. Important challenges remain; most notably the provision of secure employment at remunerative conditions and the sustainable use of water resources. Private food standards may contribute to overcoming these challenges. Empirical evidence that directly measures the implications of horticultural exports on food security is highly needed.
    Keywords: high-value food exports, food security, poverty reduction, agri-food system transformation, contract-farming, labor markets, Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Consumer/Household Economics, Crop Production/Industries, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Food Security and Poverty, International Development, Labor and Human Capital, Production Economics, F1, F6, I3,
    Date: 2016–03
  15. By: John Cawley; Andrew S. Hanks; David R. Just; Brian Wansink
    Abstract: This paper examines how consumers respond to price incentives for nutritious relative to less-nutritious foods, and whether the framing of the price incentive as a subsidy for nutritious food or a tax on non-nutritious food influences consumers’ responses. Analyzing transaction data from an 8-month randomized controlled field experiment involving 208 households, we find that a 10% relative price difference between nutritious and less nutritious food does not significantly affect overall purchases, although low-income households respond to the subsidy frame by buying more of both nutritious and less-nutritious food.
    JEL: D04 D12 H0 H2 H3 I1 I12 I18 Q18 Z18
    Date: 2016–01
  16. By: Cati Torres (Applied Economics Department, Universitat de les Illes Balears.); Nick Hanley (Department of Geography and Sustainable Development, University of St. Andrews)
    Abstract: This report aims to provide, through an extensive review of the literature, a comprehensive overview of the current (2015) knowledge base regarding the valuation of coastal and marine ecosystem services (ES), placing emphasis on the analysis of both the policy implications of current studies as well as on existing challenges. It aims to contribute not only to the role EV/ECBA can play in the management of coastal and marine ecosystems, but also to promote discussion among social and ecological researchers about further research needs
    Keywords: valuation, benefits transfer, marine and coastal ecosystem services, environmental cost-benefit analysis, policy analysis
    JEL: Q51 Q25 Q57 Q58
    Date: 2015–03
  17. By: Mattas, Konstadinos; Tsakiridou, Efthimia; Michailidis, Anastasios; Karelakis, Christos
    Abstract: This work attempts to present a detailed picture of the sunflower cultivation in Greece in comparison with its most competitive crops, in terms of costs, benefits, income, employment and expertise. Thus, the economic effectiveness, of sunflower cultivation at farmers’ level, is thoroughly examined, the indirect benefits (crop rotation, social, environmental, foreign exchange, energy dependence) of sunflower chain assessed and finally both direct and indirect benefits generated for the region are estimated.
    Keywords: Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Marketing,
    Date: 2015–10
  18. By: Eric C. Edwards; Oscar Cristi; Gonzalo Edwards; Gary D. Libecap
    Abstract: We present a lobby model to explain the adoption and persistence of seemingly costly environmental policies relative to the likely benefits generated. The arguments of the model are illustrated by water trade restrictions for mining firms in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. The area is one of the driest in the world but also the world’s top copper producer. Due to regulation of access to local water in the region, firms have begun using desalinated water at a cost of up to $19,542 per m3/day while agricultural water trades at median price of $343 per m3/day. We explore how governmental maintenance of environmental and indigenous water supplies through restrictions on water trades causes these large price differentials. We provide a simple framework that explains how this type of policy can be supported under reasonable assumptions about lobbying. Interest group lobbying, limited information to unorganized general citizens about policy costs and benefits, and their associated distribution can lead to strong regulation, even when the protected environmental areas and agricultural populations are small and isolated. Difference- in-difference modeling of sector prices indicates that after an abrupt increase in regulatory denials, prices diverged in a manner consistent with the lobbying model. Using market price and desalination cost data, policy costs are estimated at $6.15 billion dollars or approximately $350 per citizen, which may or may not equate to perceived general benefits.
    JEL: N56 N76 Q25 Q28 Q51 Q56
    Date: 2016–01
  19. By: Ahamadou MAICHANOU
    Abstract: This article focuses on borrowers default in rural credit in Niger, according to their food needs situation. Given that economic agents are likely to adopt opportunistic behavior rather than mutually beneficial relations when facing natural hazards, this analysis is taken from the perspective of contract theory with asymmetric information. In the case of rural Niger, it empirically addresses the determinants of involuntary default, voluntary default and repayment effort, while managing the difficulties of applying the concepts of information economy and uncertainty to the complexity of rural area credit in a developing country. Results show more involuntary default than voluntary one and a real willing to repay. These results make us to provide support for households with effort repayment willing and establish an incentives structure for all kind of borrowers.
    Keywords: Contract, credit, risk of default, asymmetry of information, rural, Niger
    JEL: D13 D86
    Date: 2016
  20. By: Zaki, Mary
    Abstract: I study the effect of access to payday loans on the timing, level and composition of consumption. Using a newly obtained military administrative dataset of sales at on-base grocery and department stores, I examine how consumption behavior changes after the passage of a federal law that effectively bans military personnel from accessing payday loans in some states but not others. The military setting is ideal for this analysis because military personnel are assigned to locations across the United States with varying degrees of access to payday loans. Furthermore, since military personnel face varying known wait times between paycheck receipts throughout the year, I can examine daily consumption patterns in ways that were infeasible with previous datasets and surveys. I first present evidence that food expenditures spike on payday and are significantly lower at the end of a pay period; the fact that these patterns hold for perishable goods like produce indicates that food consumption is also not smooth, even over a two-week period. Then using a difference-in-difference framework, I find that payday loan access enables consumers to better smooth their consumption between paychecks, with no detectable effect on the level of food consumption. These patterns imply that payday loans enable liquidity-constrained individuals to smooth their consumption. However, I also find suggestive evidence that they lead to temptation purchases. Military personnel purchase more alcohol and electronics when given access to payday loans. Further evidence suggests that there may be significant heterogeneity in the population, with indications of present-biased preferences among some individuals and forward-looking, self controlled behavior among others.
    Keywords: Consumption Behavior, Short-term Credit, Environmental Economics and Policy, D14, D18, G23,
    Date: 2016–03–01
  21. By: Blankespoor,Brian; Dasgupta,Susmita; Lange,Glenn-Marie
    Abstract: Adaptation to climate change includes addressing sea level rise and increased storm surges in many coastal areas. Mangroves can substantially reduce the vulnerability of the adjacent coastal land from inundation and erosion. However, climate change poses a large threat to mangroves. This paper quantifies the coastal protection provided by mangroves for 42 developing countries in the current climate, and a future climate change scenario with a one-meter sea level rise and 10 percent intensification of storms. The benefits of the coastal protection provided by mangroves are measured in terms of population and gross domestic product at a reduced risk from inundation; the loss of benefits under climate change is measured as the increased population and gross domestic product at risk. The findings demonstrate that although sea level rise and increased storm intensity would increase storm surge areas and the amounts of built resources at risk, the greatest impact is the expected loss of mangroves. Under current climate and mangrove coverage, 3.5 million people and roughly $400 million in gross domestic product of are at risk. In the future climate change scenario, the vulnerable population and gross domestic product at risk would increase by 103 and 233 percent, respectively. The greatest risk is in East Asia, especially in Indonesia, the Philippines, and Myanmar.
    Keywords: Water Resources Assessment,Wildlife Resources,Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases,Wetlands,Coastal and Marine Environment
    Date: 2016–03–14
  22. By: Maryam Ahmadi (Lombardi Advanced School of Economic Research (LASER) and University of Milan); Niaz Bashiri Behmiri (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM)); Matteo Manera (University of Milan-Bicocca and FEEM)
    Abstract: This study investigates the effects of oil price shocks on volatility of selected agricultural and metal commodities. To achieve this goal, we decompose an oil price shock to its underlying components, including macroeconomics and oil specific shocks. The applied methodology is the structural vector autoregressive (SVAR) model and the time span is from April 1983 to December 2013. The investigation is divided into two subsamples, before and after 2006 for agricultures taking into account the 2006-2008 food crisis, and before and after 2008 for metals considering the recent global financial crisis. The validity of time divisions is confirmed by historical decomposition accomplishment. We find that, based on impulse response functions, the response of volatility of each commodity to an oil price shock differs significantly depending on the underlying cause of the shock for the both pre and post-crisis periods. moreover, according to variance decomposition the explanatory power of oil shocks becomes stronger after the crisis. The different responses of commodities are described in detail by investigating market characteristics in each period.
    Keywords: Metals, Commodities, Volatility, Oil Price
    JEL: Q02 Q14 Q41 C22
    Date: 2015–10
  23. By: Baffes,John; Haniotis,Tassos
    Abstract: After 2005, commodity prices experienced their longest and broadest boom since World War II. Agricultural prices have now come down considerably since their 2011 peak, but are still 40 percent higher in real terms than their 2000 lows. This paper briefly addresses the main arguments on the causes of the agricultural price cycle. It broadens the scope of analysis by focusing on six agricultural commodities, and identifies the relative weights of key quantifiable drivers of their prices. It concludes that increases in real income negatively affect real agricultural prices, as predicted by Engel's Law. Energy prices matter most (not surprisingly, given the energy-intensive nature of agriculture), followed by stock-to-use ratios and, to a lesser extent, exchange rate movements. The cost of capital affects prices only marginally, probably because it not only influences demand, but also evokes a supply response.
    Keywords: Climate Change Economics,Food&Beverage Industry,Energy Production and Transportation,Emerging Markets,Markets and Market Access
    Date: 2016–03–01
  24. By: Ornelas, Emanuel
    Abstract: Special and Differential Treatment for Developing Countries (SDT) constitutes a central feature of the GATT/WTO system. Its formal goal is to foster export-led growth in developing countries. Its theoretical foundations and empirical support are, however, weak at best. In particular, SDT conflicts with the GATT's two key principles of reciprocity and nondiscrimination, compromising the efficiency of the multilateral trading system. Still, if SDT provisions help those who most need help, sacrificing economic efficiency may be justifiable. However, there are numerous criticisms, on theoretical and empirical grounds, to the premises and the achievements of SDT-based disciplines, casting serious doubt on its effectiveness in helping developing countries trade and grow. For researchers, the good news is that there is plenty of room for progress, with several important areas where our understanding remains unsatisfactory but progress is feasible---that is, where the expected return to research effort seems unusually high.
    Keywords: export-led growth; firm delocation; Generalized System of Preferences; preferential tariffs; terms of trade; trade policy; World Trade Organization
    JEL: F13 F55 O19 O24
    Date: 2016–03
  25. By: Magali Dauvin
    Abstract: Natural resource prices have been plunging since early 2014, constituing a threat to emerging markets whose revenues mainly stem from commodity exports. Within this context, the purpose of this paper is to investigate to what extent commodities are reflected in financial markets’ assessment of emerging country risk, and if a special premium is added for commodity exporters. We focus on 22 emerging markets sovereign spreads and assess how prices and their commodity trade structure are gauged by investors. Our results indicate that commodity prices are relevant for exporters, as they help relaxing the credit constraint in periods of increasing prices. As for resourcepoor countries, they are of no importance when assessing sovereign risk. Also, global financial markets do not pay attention to dependence on natural resources although they are now suffering from collapsing prices. Finally, high variations in commodity prices are not particularly reflected in the way markets assess sovereign risk.
    Keywords: Sovereign spreads, emerging markets, commodity exporters, commodity prices.
    JEL: C23 F34 F41
    Date: 2016
  26. By: Wakamatsu, Hiroki; Miyata, Tsutom; Kamiyama, Ryutaro
    Abstract: Demand for unshelled oysters has recently risen in Japan as oyster bars gain popularity among consumers. This study undertook consumer preference research to evaluate a new brand of unspawned oysters, “Amakoro,” compared with conventional oysters. We surveyed the willingness-to-pay (WTP) for both oyster types as well as consumers’ evaluation of the oysters’ appearance, fragrance, taste, and texture. Based on contingent valuation method and analytic hierarchy process, we analyzed how much each factor of consumers’ tastes explains WTP. The results show that Amakoro is preferred to the conventional oyster in terms of appearance, which is positively correlated to WTP, while the conventional oyster is inelastic to any kind of taste factors, but has a robust value. In addition, the results show that WTP largely depends on the characteristics of location and consumption pattern of oysters.
    Keywords: AHP, Consumer Preference, CVM, Japan, Oyster, WTP
    JEL: D4 M31 Q22
    Date: 2016–02–24
  27. By: Roberto Roson (Department of Economics, University Of Venice Cà Foscari); Martina Sartori (Department of Economics, University Of Trento)
    Abstract: Climate change damage (or, more correctly, impact) functions relate variations in temperature (or other climate variables) to economic impacts in various dimensions, and are at the basis of quantitative modeling exercises for the assessment of climate change policies. This document provides a summary of results from a series of meta-analyses aimed at estimating parameters for six specific damage functions, referring to: sea level rise, agricultural productivity, heat effects on labor productivity, human health, tourism flows and households' energy demand. All parameters of the damage functions are estimated for each of the 140 countries and regions in the GTAP9 dataset. To illustrate the salient characteristics of our estimates, we approximate the change in real GDP for the different effects, in all regions, corresponding to an increase in average temperature of +3°C. After considering the overall impact, we highlight which factor is the most significant one in each country, and we elaborate on the distributional consequences of climate change.
    Keywords: Climate change, integrated assessment, computable general equilibrium, damage function, climate impacts
    JEL: C68 C82 D58 Q51 Q54
    Date: 2016
  28. By: Abhijit Banerjee; Rema Hanna; Jordan C. Kyle; Benjamin A. Olken; Sudarno Sumarto
    Abstract: Outsourcing government service provision to private firms can improve efficiency and reduce rents, but there are risks that non-contractible quality will decline and that reform could be blocked by vested interests exactly where potential gains are greatest. We examine these issues by conducting a randomized field experiment in 572 Indonesian localities in which a procurement process was introduced that allowed citizens to bid to take over the implementation of a subsidized rice distribution program. This led 17 percent of treated locations to switch distributors. Introducing the possibility of outsourcing led to a 4.6 percent reduction in the markup paid by households. Quality did not suffer and, if anything, households reported the quality of the rice improved. Bidding committees may have avoided quality problems by choosing bidders who had relevant experience as traders, even if they proposed slightly higher prices. Mandating higher levels of competition by encouraging additional bidders further reduced prices. We document offsetting effects of having high rents at baseline: when the initial price charged was high and when baseline satisfaction levels were low, entry was higher and committees were more likely to replace the status quo distributor; but, incumbents measured to be more dishonest on an experimental measure of cheating were also more likely to block the outsourcing process. We find no effect on price or quality of providing information about program functioning without the opportunity to privatize, implying that the observed effect was not solely due to increased transparency. On net, the results suggest that contracting out has the potential to improve performance, though the magnitude of the effects may be partially muted due to push back from powerful elites.
    JEL: D73 H57
    Date: 2015–12
  29. By: Alice Favero (Sohngen); Robert Mendelsohn (Yale University); Brent Sohngen (Ohio State University)
    Abstract: The carbon mitigation literature has separately considered using forests to store carbon and as a source of bioenergy. In this paper, we look at both options to reach a 2°C mitigation target. This paper combines the global forest model, GTM, with the IAM WITCH model to study the optimal use of forestland to reach an aggressive global mitigation target. The analysis confirms that using both options is preferable to using either one alone. At first, while carbon prices are low, forest carbon storage dominates. However, when carbon prices pass $235/tCO2, wood bioenergy with CCS becomes increasingly important as a mechanism to remove CO2 from the atmosphere. The use of both mechanisms increases global forestland at the expense of marginal cropland. While the storage program dominates, natural forestland expands. But when the wood bioenergy program starts, natural forestland shrinks as more forests become managed for higher yields.
    Keywords: Climate Change, Woody Biomass, Carbon Sequestration, BECCS, Forestry, Carbon Mitigation, Integrated Assessment Model
    JEL: Q23 Q42 Q54
    Date: 2016–01
  30. By: Gary D. Libecap
    Abstract: I examine Ronald Coase’s criticism of standard regulatory and tax policies to address environmental externalities. I elaborate some of Coase’s key points and discuss opportunities for Coasean exchange as an alternative mitigation approach. Regulation, tax, and Coasean exchange, such as through cap-and-trade regimes, are presented as substitutes, based on the relative transaction costs involved. Transaction costs are those of information, bounding, enforcing, and exchanging property rights. In general, transaction costs are not examined in depth in the environmental economics literature. This is particularly the case for the costs of political bargaining and lobbying that arise from implementing and administering government regulation and tax policies, although these costs have received somewhat more attention with cap and trade regimes. Coasean exchange and important market design issues are illustrated with examples.
    JEL: H23 K32 N5 Q28 Q38 Q58
    Date: 2016–01

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.