nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2012‒02‒01
nine papers chosen by
Mark Lee
Towson University

  1. Global market shocks and poverty in Vietnam: the case of rice By Ian Coxhead; Vu Hoang Linh; Le Dong Tam
  3. Loan Defaults in Africa By Svetlana Andrianova; Badi H Baltagi; Panicos O Demetriades
  4. War and Stature: Growing Up During the Nigerian Civil War By Richard Akresh; Sonia Bhalotra; Marinella Leone; Una Osili
  5. Local Financial Development and Household Welfare: Microevidence from Thai Households By Gloede, Oliver; Rungruxsirivorn, Ornsiri
  6. The Power of Political Voice: Women's Political Representation and Crime in India By Mani, Anandi; Iyer, Lakshmi; Mishra, Prachi; Topalova, Petia
  7. 2005-2010 Microfinance Market Trends in Latin America and the Caribbean By Renso Martínez
  8. Is Tanzania a Success Story? A Long Term Analysis By Sebastian Edwards
  9. The Village Fund Loan: Who Gets It, Keeps It and Loses It? By Kislat, Carmen; Menkhoff, Lukas

  1. By: Ian Coxhead (Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, University of Wisconsin-Madison); Vu Hoang Linh (University of Economics and Business - Vietnam National University); Le Dong Tam (Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, University of Wisconsin-Madison)
    Abstract: World food prices have experienced dramatic increases in recent years. These ?shocks? affect food importers and exporters alike. Vietnam is a major exporter of rice, and rice is also a key item in domestic production, employment and consumption. Accordingly, rice price shocks from the world market have general equilibrium impacts and as such, their implications for household welfare are not known ex ante. In this paper we present a framework for understanding the direct and indirect welfare effects of a global market shock of this kind. We quantify transmission of the shock from global indicator prices to domestic markets. Then we use an applied general equilibrium model to simulate the economic effects of the price changes. A recursive mapping to a nationally representative household living standards survey permits us to identify in detail the ceteris paribus effects of the shock on household incomes and welfare. In this analysis, interregional and intersectoral labor market adjustments emerge as key channels transmitting the effects of global price shocks across sectors and among households.
    Keywords: Vietnam, rice, poverty, labor mobility, general equilibrium, microsimulation.
    JEL: I32 D58 Q17
    Date: 2012
  2. By: NZINGA H. BROUSSARD (The Ohio State University); STEFAN DERCON (University of Oxford); ROHINI SOMANATHAN (Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics, Delhi, India)
    Abstract: We study the distribution of food aid in Ethiopia between 1994 and 2004 using data from the Ethiopian Rural Household Survey. Over this period village leaders had considerable discretion in disbursing aid subject to official guidelines and periodic monitoring. We use a principal-agent model and household panel data for approximately 940 households to understand biases in the allocation of aid. The model shows that correlations between aid and observed measures of need are not a good measure of targeting because agents have incentives to distort allocations within targeted classes. Consistent with the model, we find that the aid recipients match official criteria but disbursements are negatively correlated with determinants of need that are not easily observable by monitoring agencies, namely pre-aid consumption, self-reported power and involvement in village-level organizations. Our results suggest informal structures of power within African villages influence the extent to which food aid insulates some of the world's poorest families from agricultural shocks but also that policy guidelines do constrain permissible deviations from need-based allocations.
    Date: 2012–01
  3. By: Svetlana Andrianova; Badi H Baltagi; Panicos O Demetriades
    Abstract: African financial deepening is beset by a high rate of loan defaults, which encourages banks to hold liquid assets instead of lending. We put forward a novel theoretical model that captures the salient features of African credit markets which shows that equilibrium with high loan defaults and low lending can arise when contract enforcement institutions are weak, investment opportunities are relatively scarce and information imperfections abound. We provide evidence using a panel of 110 banks from 29 African countries which corroborates our theoretical predictions.
    Keywords: Financial development; Africa
    JEL: G21 O16
    Date: 2011–08
  4. By: Richard Akresh; Sonia Bhalotra; Marinella Leone; Una Osili
    Abstract: The Nigerian civil war of 1967-70 was precipitated by secession of the Igbo-dominated south-eastern region to create the state of Biafra. It was the first civil war in Africa, the predecessor of many. We investigate the legacies of this war four decades later. Using variation across ethnicity and cohort, we identify significant long run impacts on human health capital. Individuals exposed to the war at all ages between birth and adolescence exhibit reduced adult stature and these impacts are largest in adolescence. Adult stature is portentous of reduced life expectancy and lower earnings.
    Keywords: war, height, early life, human capital investments, Nigeria.
    JEL: I12 O12 J13
    Date: 2011–12
  5. By: Gloede, Oliver; Rungruxsirivorn, Ornsiri
    Abstract: We provide new micro evidence on the discussion about the relationship between financial development and welfare. Relying on the concept of local financial development our analysis focuses on three dimensions of household welfare: vulnerability to poverty, investment, and consumption smoothing. Even though we cannot find a significant effect on vulnerability, we provide evidence that financial development is correlated with higher investment and better possibilities to smooth consumption. The extent of both effects is also economically significant. Our results hold for alternative specifications and variations in the measurement of financial development. --
    Keywords: credit rationing,investment,consumption,consumption smoothing,growth
    JEL: O16 G21 D12 D24
    Date: 2012
  6. By: Mani, Anandi (University of Warwick); Iyer, Lakshmi (Harvard Business School); Mishra, Prachi (International Monetary Fund); Topalova, Petia (International Monetary Fund)
    Abstract: Using state-level variation in the timing of political reforms, we find that an increase in female representation in local government induces a large and significant rise in documented crimes against women in India. Our evidence suggests that this increase is good news, as it is driven primarily by greater reporting rather than greater incidence of such crimes. In contrast, we find no increase in crimes against men or gender-neutral crimes. We also examine the effectiveness of alternative forms of political representation: large scale membership of women in local councils affects crime against them more than their presence in higher level leadership positions.
    Keywords: crime; women’s empowerment; minority representation; voice
    Date: 2011
  7. By: Renso Martínez
    Abstract: The objective of this report is to present an early update for the performance of the Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) in regional, sub-regional and certain national markets at the close of the 2010 financial year in terms of coverage credit types, finance structure, and risk and profitability.
    Keywords: Private Sector :: Microbusinesses & Microfinance, Financial Sector :: Financial Risk, Financial Sector :: Financial Markets, Financial Sector :: Financial Services, MFI, MIFs, Microfinance Institutions, credit types, finance structure, risk profitability
    Date: 2011–05
  8. By: Sebastian Edwards
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to provide a historical perspective on the reform process initiated in Tanzania in 1986, and deepened in 1996. In order to do this I concentrate mostly on the period spanning from 1967, when the Arusha Declaration was adopted by the official political party the TANU, and 1996, when a new approach towards foreign aid was implemented. I am particularly interested in investigating how external aid affected Tanzania during the early years, and how it contributed to the demise of the economy in the 1970s and 1980s. I also analyze the role played by foreign aid in the subsequent (after 1996) recovery of the country. I emphasize both technical as well as political economy issues related to imbalances, disequilibria, devaluation, black markets, adjustment, and reform. Because of the emphasis on foreign aid and macroeconomics, I pay special attention to three important episodes in Tanzania’s economic history: (a) the exchange rate crisis of the late 1970’s and early 1980s; (b) the IMF Stand-by Program and the maxi-devaluation of 1986; and (c) The serious impasse between donors and the Tanzanian authorities in the mid 1990s. At the end of the analysis I ask whether Tanzania is, as officials from the multilateral institutions have claimed repeatedly, a “success story.”
    JEL: F31 F32 G01 N17 N72 O55
    Date: 2012–01
  9. By: Kislat, Carmen; Menkhoff, Lukas
    Abstract: The village funds programme in Thailand is one of the biggest microfinance programmes in the world aiming at improving access to finance and income in rural areas. Earlier studies indicate that the programme is successful in realising its ambitions to some degree. We extend this work by analysing a second wave of a household survey and find that village fund borrowers are consistently characterised by a lower economic status; accordingly village fund loan are an important lifeline to those households. However, we cannot identify any significant substitution between village fund loans and other loans, raising doubts about the long-run impact of the village fund programme.
    Keywords: rural finance, informal financial institutions, microfinance, Thailand
    JEL: O16 O17 G21
    Date: 2012–01

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