nep-cna New Economics Papers
on China
Issue of 2016‒03‒06
seven papers chosen by
Zheng Fang
Ohio State University

  1. Regional Housing Supply Elasticity in China 1999-2013: A Spatial Equilibrium Analysis By Rickman, Dan S.; Wang, Hongbo
  2. The rise of a financial revolution in Republican China in 1900-1937: an institutional narrative By Debin Ma
  3. Determining Minimum Wages in China: Do Economic Factors Dominate? By Dreger, Christian; Kosfeld, Reinhold; Zhang, Yanqun
  4. Remittances and expenditure patterns of the left behinds in rural China By Sylvie Démurger; Xiaoqian Wang
  5. The Economics of Healthy Ageing in China By Heshmati, Almas
  6. Experimentation and decentralization in China's labor relations By Eli Friedman; Sarosh Kuruvilla
  7. The effect of housing wealth on labor force participation: evidence from China By Fu, Shihe; Liao, Yu; Zhang, Junfu

  1. By: Rickman, Dan S.; Wang, Hongbo
    Abstract: In this paper, we apply a spatial equilibrium growth model (Glaeser and Tobio, 2008) to examine relative housing price growth across the provinces and municipalities of mainland China for 1999-2013. The spatial equilibrium growth model is built upon the traditional static Rosen-Roback spatial equilibrium model. A distinguishing feature is the addition of a regionally-varying elasticity of housing supply. A primary finding is the significant geographical differences in housing price growth and the importance of differences in regional housing supply in explaining the differences in housing price growth. Regions in the East had the most inelastic housing supply, while northern regions had the most elastic housing supply.
    Keywords: Housing supply; China; Spatial equilibrium
    JEL: R11 R31
    Date: 2016–01–31
  2. By: Debin Ma
    Abstract: This paper surveys the phenomenal transformation of banking and finance, public debt and monetary regimes during 1900-1937, a period of great political instability in Chinese history. To understand why sectors which are often most vulnerable to the security of property rights and contract enforcement, have become the vanguard of growth in such an era of uncertainty, I highlight the role of institutions as seen in the form of a business dominated quasi-political structure that grew outside the formal political sphere. This structure rested on the institutional nexus of Western treaty ports (with Shanghai being the important) and China Maritime Customs service, a relatively autonomous tax bureaucracy. By ensuring the credibility of repayment of government bonds, this financial-fiscal mechanism laid the institutional foundation for the rise of modern Chinese banks, a viable market for public debt and increasing supply of reputable convertible bank notes during this era of national dis-integration. Our narrative carries far-reaching implications on the ongoing great divergence debate.
    Keywords: China; financial revolution; public debt; credible commitment
    JEL: N0
    Date: 2016–02
  3. By: Dreger, Christian (DIW Berlin); Kosfeld, Reinhold (University of Kassel); Zhang, Yanqun (Chinese Academy of Social Sciences)
    Abstract: Minimum wages may be an important instrument to reduce income inequality in a society and to promote socially inclusive economic growth. While higher minimum wages can support the Chinese transformation towards consumption driven growth, they can worsen the price competitiveness in export markets. As they differ throughout the country, this paper investigates their determinants at the regional level. In addition to a broad set of economic determinants, such as per capita income and consumption, consumer prices, unemployment and industrial structures, spatial effects are taken into account. They might arise for different reasons, including competition of local policymakers. The results show that the impact of economic variables declines, once spatial spillovers are considered. Although the minimum wage regulation pursues the relevance of economic factors in the determination of the appropriate levels, the actual development is largely driven by regional dependencies. As minimum wage standards set by local officials do not fully reflect the regional economic development, further reforms should be on the agenda.
    Keywords: Chinese transformation, minimum wages, spatial effects, spatial Durbin model
    JEL: J30 R23 C23
    Date: 2016–02
  4. By: Sylvie Démurger (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université Jean Monnet - Saint-Etienne - PRES Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Xiaoqian Wang (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université Jean Monnet - Saint-Etienne - PRES Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This paper investigates how private transfers from internal migration in China affect the expenditure behaviour of families left behind in rural areas. Using data from the Rural-Urban Migration in China (RUMiC) survey, we assess the impact of remittances sent to rural households on consumption-type and investment-type expenditures. We apply propensity score matching to account for the selection of households into receiving remittances, and estimate average treatment effects on the treated. We find that remittances supplement income in rural China and lead to increased consumption rather than increased investment. Moreover, we find evidence of a strong negative impact on education expenditures, which could be detrimental to sustaining investment in human capital in poor rural areas in China.
    Keywords: remittances, labour migration, expenditure behaviour, left-behind, propensity score matching, China
    Date: 2016
  5. By: Heshmati, Almas (Jönköping University, Sogang University)
    Abstract: Healthy ageing is a challenge for many countries with significant shares of elderly people. Literature refers to China's ageing population as a ticking time bomb which paradoxically is both a challenge and an opportunity for the country. Health is considered an important determinant of economic growth and competitiveness. The health of the elderly population determines its need for resources and care. Thus, investing in healthy ageing contributes to economic and social well-being. This study is a review of literature on the social and economic aspects of healthy ageing. It summarizes alternative approaches presented in literature to ease pressures of a rapidly growing ageing population. The main focus is on strategies for healthy ageing, policy practices and measures, organization, finances and manpower resources to promote healthy ageing in China. Up-to-date theories and methods applied to household surveys and population statistics are used to quantify the problem, resource requirements and estimating the social and economic benefits of having policies and measures for healthy ageing. Conclusions are drawn with respect to conditions of healthy ageing in China and about the state policy in this regard.
    Keywords: healthy ageing, ageing in China, active ageing, challenges and opportunities, economics of healthy ageing
    JEL: H75 I15 I18 I38 P36
    Date: 2016–02
  6. By: Eli Friedman; Sarosh Kuruvilla
    Abstract: In this introduction to the special issue ‘Changing work, labour and employment relations in China’, we argue that China is taking an experimental and decentralized approach to the development of new labor relations frameworks. Particular political constraints in China prevent interest aggregation among workers, as the central state sees this as posing a risk to social stability. Firms and local governments have been given a degree of space to experiment with different arrangements, as long as the categorical ban on independent unions is not violated. The consequence has been an increasingly differentiated labor relations landscape, with significant variation by region and sector. We note some countervailing tendencies towards re-centralization, but emphasize that this phenomenon remains largely confined to the municipal level. The five articles in this special issue address different aspects of both experimentation and decentralization in labor relations.
    Keywords: China; collective bargaining; labor relations; strikes; unions
    JEL: R14 J01 J50
    Date: 2015
  7. By: Fu, Shihe; Liao, Yu; Zhang, Junfu
    Abstract: This paper uses the 2011 China Household Finance Survey data to estimate the effect of change in housing value on homeowners’ labor force participation. Using the average housing capital gains of other homes in the same community as an instrument for the housing capital gains of a given household, we find that a 100 thousand yuan increase in housing value leads to a 1.37 percentage point decrease in female homeowners’ probability of participating in the labor force and a 1.49 percentage point increase in their probability of becoming housewives. We find little effect on men’s labor force participation.
    Keywords: Housing wealth effect; housing price; labor supply; labor force participation
    JEL: J21 J22 R20 R30
    Date: 2015–09–15

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