nep-cna New Economics Papers
on China
Issue of 2020‒04‒27
six papers chosen by
Zheng Fang
Ohio State University

  1. Sibling Spillover in Rural China: A Story of Sisters and Daughters By Bansak, Cynthia; Jiang, Xuan; Yang, Guanyi
  2. Survival of the Confucians: social status and fertility in China, 1400-1900 By Hu, Sijie
  3. Urbanization Policy and Economic Development: A Quantitative Analysis of China’s Differential Hukou Reforms By Hsu, Wen-Tai; Ma, Lin
  4. Impacts of Social and Economic Factors on the Transmission of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in China By Qiu, Yun; Chen, Xi; Shi, Wei
  5. Do Quarantine Experiences and Attitudes Towards COVID-19 Affect the Distribution of Psychological Outcomes in China? A Quantile Regression Analysis By Lu, Haiyang; Nie, Peng; Qian, Long
  6. The Long-Term Cognitive and Schooling Effects of Childhood Vaccinations in China By Oskorouchi, Hamid R.; Sousa-Poza, Alfonso; Bloom, David E.

  1. By: Bansak, Cynthia (St. Lawrence University); Jiang, Xuan (Ohio State University); Yang, Guanyi (St. Lawrence University)
    Abstract: We find a strong positive sibling spillover effect in two-children households in rural China, as measured by an increase in the Chinese and Math test scores of elder siblings when their younger sibling starts school. We use the Chinese Law of Compulsory Education as an exogenous variation in the timing of school enrollment to control for the impact of simultaneous and unobserved out-of-sibship factors. The mechanism for the sibling spillover likely comes from an increase in studying interactions within the sibling pairs. The spillover is prompted by having a younger sister enter school and is the strongest when both children are daughters. However, the son-preference culture emphasized in certain regions negatively offsets the positive sister-led spillover.
    Keywords: human capital, peer effect, sibling spillover, school cutoff, son preference, intrahousehold allocation, rural China
    JEL: E24 C68 J30
    Date: 2020–04
  2. By: Hu, Sijie
    Abstract: This paper uses the genealogical records of 35,691 men to test one of the fundamental assumptions of the Malthusian model. Did higher living standards result in increased net reproduction? An empirical investigation of China between 1400 and 1900 finds a positive relationship between social status and fertility. The gentry scholars, the Confucians, produced three times as many sons as the commoners, and this status effect on fertility was stronger in the post-1600 period than in the pre-1600 period. The effect disappears once I control for the number of marriages. Increased marriages among upper-class males drove reproductive success in Imperial China. The results add a demographic perspective to explain the lack of modern economic growth in Imperial China.
    Keywords: fertility; social status; marriages; reproductive success; Malthusian mechanism; China
    JEL: J13 J12 N35
    Date: 2020–04–01
  3. By: Hsu, Wen-Tai (School of Economics, Singapore Management University); Ma, Lin (National University of Singapore)
    Abstract: The household registration system (hukou system) in China has hampered rural-urban mi-gration by posing large migration friction. The system has been gradually relaxed in the past few decades, but the reforms have been differential in city size and by the coastal-inland di-vide. We find a striking contrast in the migration patterns between years 2005 and 2015; rural people tended to move more to the coastal urban region in 2005, but more to the inland urban region in 2015. We calibrate a spatial quantitative model to the world economy in both years with China being divided into the rural, coastal urban, and inland urban regions. We find that alternative urbanization policies that are not differential and that are more laissez-faire would substantially improve national welfare, in magnitudes that are comparable to the welfare gains from the trade liberalization that China has put in place in the past.
    Keywords: Hukou system; household registration system; differential reform; urbanization policy; economic development; spatial quantitative analysis
    Date: 2020–03–01
  4. By: Qiu, Yun; Chen, Xi; Shi, Wei
    Abstract: This paper models the local and cross-city transmissions of the novel coronavirus in China between January 19 and February 29 in 2020. We examine the role of various socioeconomic mediating factors, including public health measures that encourage social distancing in local communities. Weather characteristics two weeks ago are used as instrumental variables for causal inference. Stringent quarantine, city lockdown, and local public health measures imposed since late January significantly decreased the virus transmission rate. The virus spread was contained by the middle of February. Population out ow from the outbreak source region posed a higher risk to the destination regions than other factors including geographic proximity and similarity in economic conditions. We quantify the effects of different public health measures in reducing the number of infections through counterfactual analyses. Over 1.4 million infections and 56,000 deaths could have been avoided as a result of the national and provincial public health measures imposed in late January in China.
    Keywords: 2019 novel coronavirus,transmission,quarantine
    JEL: I18 I12 C23
    Date: 2020
  5. By: Lu, Haiyang; Nie, Peng; Qian, Long
    Abstract: While quarantine has become a widely used control measure during the outbreak of the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), empirical research on whether and to what extent quarantine and attitudes towards COVID-19 influence psychological outcomes is scant. Using a cross-sectional online survey, this paper is the first to investigate the heterogeneous impact of quarantine experiences and attitudes towards COVID-19 on the whole distribution of psychological well-being in China. We find that credibility of real-time updates and confidence in the epidemic control are associated with a decline in depression but an increase in happiness. Such effects are stronger in the upper distribution of depression and the median of happiness. We also discern that individuals with severe depressive symptoms (or lower levels of happiness) are more susceptible to the severity of the pandemic. Moreover, home self-quarantine is associated a decrease in depression but an increase in happiness, by contrast, community-level quarantine discourages happiness, especially in the lower distribution of happiness.
    Keywords: Quarantine,Attitudes,Quantile regression,Psychological well-being
    JEL: I10 I31
    Date: 2020
  6. By: Oskorouchi, Hamid R. (University of Göttingen); Sousa-Poza, Alfonso (University of Hohenheim); Bloom, David E. (Harvard University)
    Abstract: By exploiting rich retrospective data on childhood immunization, socioeconomics, and health status in China (the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study), we assess the long-term effects of childhood vaccination on cognitive and educational outcomes in that country. To do so, we apply various techniques (e.g., propensity score and coarsened exact matching and correlated random effects) to different sets of conditioning variables and subsamples to estimate the average treatment on the treated effect of childhood vaccination. Our results confirm that vaccinations before the age of 15 have long-term positive and economically meaningful effects on nonhealth outcomes such as education and cognitive skills. These effects are relatively strong, with vaccinated individuals enjoying about one more year of schooling and performing substantially better later in life on several cognitive tests.
    Keywords: cognitive skills, vaccines, China, education
    JEL: I12 I18 I21
    Date: 2020–03

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