nep-his New Economics Papers
on Business, Economic and Financial History
Issue of 2019‒06‒17
28 papers chosen by
Bernardo Bátiz-Lazo
Bangor University

  1. Japan's response to Britain's wartime naval appeals, 1917-19 By Ian Nish
  2. Structural Change, Capital Deepening, and TFP Growth in Japan: 1885-1970 By Fukao, Kyoji; Makino, Tatsuji; Settsu, Tokihiko
  3. A History of Australian Equities By Thomas Mathews
  4. Building Workers in Madrid (1737-1805). New Wage Series and Working Lives By Mario García-Zúñiga; Ernesto López-Losa
  5. The Gold Standard and the Great Depression: a Dynamic General Equilibrium Model. By Luca Pensieroso; Romain Restout
  6. Trade Blocs and Trade Wars during the Interwar Period By Jacks, David S.; Novy, Dennis
  7. Human Development in the Age of Globalisation By Leandro Prados de la Escosura
  8. Community Origins of Industrial Entrepreneurship in Pre-Independence India By Bishnupriya Gupta; Dilip Mookherjee; Kaivan Munshi; Mario Sanclemente
  9. The birth and development of the Italian automotive industry (1894-2015) and the Turin car cluster. By Enrietti, Aldo; Geuna, Aldo; Nava, Consuelo R.; Patrucco, Pier Paolo
  10. The Industry Anatomy of the Transatlantic Productivity Growth Slowdown By Gordon, Robert J; Sayed, Hassan
  11. Staple Products, Linkages, and Development: Evidence from Argentina By Federico Droller; Martin Fiszbein
  12. Grande Guerra e Guerra Colonial: Quanto Custaram aos Cofres Portugueses? By Ricardo Ferraz
  13. Philosophy of Praxis as Critique to Pure Economics: A Study in Methodology and Class Struggle By Clara Mattei
  14. Baumol versus Engel: Accounting for 100 years (1885-1985) of Structural Transformation in Japan By Fukao, Kyoji; Paul, Saumik
  15. Immigrant Communities and Knowledge Spillovers: Danish-Americans and the Development of the Dairy Industry in the United States By Boberg-Fazlic, Nina; Sharp, Paul
  16. Currency Unions By Ögren, Anders
  17. China’s extraordinary population expansion and its determinants during the qing period, 1644-1911 By Deng, Kent; Shengmin, Sun
  18. Technical progress and structural change: a long-term view By Nuvolari, Alessandro; Russo, Emanuele
  19. The King and the Marquis By Ortona, Guido
  20. Ireland’s Peculiar Microfinance Revolution, c. 1836-1845 By Eoin McLaughlin; Rowena Pecchenino
  21. El proceso de cambio estructural de la economía española desde una perspectiva histórica By Víctor González-Díez; Enrique Moral-Benito
  22. Seven Predictions About the World Without the WTO By Uri Dadush
  23. The effect of widowhood on mortality in polygamous marriages: evidence from the Utah Population Database By Kieron J. Barclay; Robyn Donrovich Thorén; Heidi A. Hanson; Ken R. Smith
  24. Factions, Local Accountability, and Long-Term Development: Theory and Evidence By Hanming Fang; Linke Hou; Mingxing Liu; Lixin Colin Xu; Pengfei Zhang
  25. Institutions, Culture and the Tropical Development Gap By Bernard Poirine; Vincent Dropsy
  26. Through Trade Wars, East Asians Finally Learning to Cooperate with Each Other? By Laixun Zhao
  27. Marx's approach to economics: a claim for subjective praxis By David Maddy; Clara Mattei
  28. Malthus in Pre-industrial Northern Italy? A Cointegration Approach By Maja Pedersen; Claudia Riani; Paul Sharp

  1. By: Ian Nish
    Abstract: This pamphlet continues our series of publications devoted to conditions in Japan in the period of the Taisho Emperor who reigned from 1912 to 1926. Taisho Studies have tended to be neglected because it was a comparatively short reign and because the Emperor had to pass his duties to a regent because of his illness at the end of this period. But it was a time when Japanese strained every muscle in order to build on the prestige she had acquired through defeating Russia in the war of 1904-5. During the Great War she had considerable success both industrially and financially and secured her position internationally through her presence at the Paris Peace Conference. But her success generated suspicion on the part of other countries, even her long-term ally, Britain. In 1914 Britain found herself in a global war and had to cope with the security problems of a far-flung empire. She was in difficulties over meeting the cost of sustaining naval forces in the Pacific and Indian Oceans at their accustomed levels and felt she had no alternative but to withdraw these forces to Europe in order to deal with the growing German naval power. Britain made many appeals to Japan for help. But until December 1916 these were politely refused. This paper deals with the Tokyo cabinet's decision to send a destroyer squadron to the Mediterranean in order to defend allied convoys carrying food and troops to European battle fronts from German U boat attack. Though small in scope compared to Japan's role in the Pacific, it made a timely contribution to Britain's current dilemma. This event has tended to go unnoticed because Japan's contribution to World War I has tended to be devalued in international literature written since 1945.
    Date: 2018–12
  2. By: Fukao, Kyoji; Makino, Tatsuji; Settsu, Tokihiko
    Abstract: After the Meiji Restoration of 1868, Japan modernized its institutions and economic growth gradually picked up. Growth accelerated especially during the so-called high-speed growth era from 1955 to 1970, when Japan rapidly caught up with Western economies. The long-term sustained high-speed growth recorded during this period was unprecedented not only in Japan but worldwide. While other East Asian countries such as Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, and China subsequently also experienced remarkable growth over a prolonged period, Japan’s place in history as the first country to record such sustained high-speed growth means that its experience continues to garner worldwide interest. Using newly constructed Hitotsubashi estimates of Japan’s historical GDP statistics and a growth accounting framework, we analyze the sources of Japan’s economic growth from 1885 to 1970 and try to answer why Japan was not able to accomplish such high-speed growth before 1955. Since until the mid-1960s the primary sector accounted for a large share of economic activity and was a major determinant of overall economic growth, we use a Hayashi and Prescott (2008) type two-sector model in which the economy overall is divided into the primary sector and the non-primary sector
    Date: 2019–05
  3. By: Thomas Mathews (Reserve Bank of Australia)
    Abstract: This paper presents stylised facts about the historical Australian equity market, drawn from a new hand-collected unit record dataset on listed companies from 1917 to 1979. Among other things, I show that: i) dividends for the early 20th century were lower than previously believed; ii) the realised returns on equities has averaged about 4 percentage points above that on government bonds since 1917, somewhat lower than previous estimates; iii) the share of profits paid out as dividends increased substantially after the introduction of franking credits in the 1980s; iv) the current industry composition of the stock exchange is atypical relative to history, despite it being dominated by essentially the same companies for the past century; and v) price-to-earnings ratios are currently almost exactly at their very long-run average, in contrast with the experience of some of other countries.
    Keywords: stock market history; Australia; dividends; equity premium
    JEL: G12 G35 N27
    Date: 2019–06
  4. By: Mario García-Zúñiga (University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU); Ernesto López-Losa (University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU)
    Abstract: This paper provides new series of building wages for 18th-century Madrid. At an international level, the usual point of reference for Spain during the 18th century is the wage series that Earl Hamilton compiled (and Robert Allen included in his database) using the payrolls from the construction of the Royal Palace of Madrid. However, Hamilton did not fully exploit the rich information that those data provide about wage rates, skills and labour force participation. Contrary to the simplicity of the labour categories in Hamilton’s series, our results show the existence of a complex world of skills and, consequently, of wage rates that only come to the surface when we reconstruct the working lives of the thousands of workers who participated in the building of the new palace. The new data presented in this paper provide some new insights into the functioning of labour markets and the complexity of wage (and even human capital) formation in pre-industrial Madrid.
    Keywords: Spain, building wages, pre-industrial labour market, 18th century, construction history
    JEL: J24 J31 J49 N33 N63
    Date: 2019–05
  5. By: Luca Pensieroso; Romain Restout
    Abstract: Was the Gold Standard a major determinant of the onset and the protracted character of the Great Depression of the 1930s in the United States and Worldwide? In this paper, we model the ‘Gold-Standard hypothesis’ in a dynamic general equilibrium framework. We show that encompassing the international and monetary dimensions of the Great Depression is important to understand what happened in the 1930s, especially outside the United States. Contrary to what is often maintained in the literature, our results suggest that the vague of successive nominal exchange rate devaluations coupled with the monetary policy implemented in the United States did not act as a relief. On the contrary, they made the Depression worse.
    Keywords: Gold Standard, Great Depression, Dynamic General Equilibrium.
    JEL: N10 E13 N01
    Date: 2019
  6. By: Jacks, David S. (Simon Fraser University and NBER); Novy, Dennis (University of Warwick and CEPR)
    Abstract: What precisely were the causes and consequences of the trade wars in the 1930s? Were there perhaps deeper forces at work in reorienting global trade prior to the outbreak of World War II? And what lessons may this particular historical episode provide for the present day? To answer these questions, we distinguish between long-run secular trends in the period from 1920 to 1939 related to the formation of trade blocs (in particular, the British Commonwealth) and short-run disruptions associated with the trade wars of the 1930s (in particular, large and widespread declines in bilateral trade, the narrowing of trade imbalances, and sharp drops in average traded distances). We argue that the trade wars mainly served to intensify pre-existing efforts towards the formation of trade blocs which dated from at least 1920. More speculatively, we argue that the trade wars of the present day may serve a similar purpose as those in the 1930s, that is, the intensification of China- and US-centric trade bloc.
    Keywords: Commonwealth ; distance ; gravity ; interwar period ; trade blocs ; trade wars
    JEL: F1 F3 N7
    Date: 2019
  7. By: Leandro Prados de la Escosura (Universidad Carlos III, CEPR, Groningen)
    Abstract: This paper provides a long run view of human development as a capabilities measure of well-being for the last one-and-a-half centuries on the basis of an augmented historical human development index [AHHDI] that combines achievements in health, education, living standard, plus liberal democracy, and provides an alternative to the UN Human Development Index, HDI. The AHHDI shows substantial gains in world human development since 1870, especially during 1913-1970, but much room for improvement exists. Life expectancy has been the leading force behind its progress, especially until 1970. Human development spread unevenly. The absolute gap between western Europe and its offshoots plus Japan -the OECD- and the Rest of the world deepened over time, though fell in relative terms, with catching-up driven by longevity during the epidemiological transition and by democratization thereafter. This result compares favourably with the growing income gap. Economic growth and human development do not always go hand-in-hand.
    Keywords: Human Development, Well-being, Capabilities, Life Expectancy, Health Transition, Schooling, Income, Liberal Democracy
    JEL: I00 N30 O15
    Date: 2019–06
  8. By: Bishnupriya Gupta (University of Wawick); Dilip Mookherjee (Boston University); Kaivan Munshi (University of Cambridge); Mario Sanclemente (University of Warwick)
    Abstract: We argue that community networks played an important role in the emergence of Indian entrepreneurship in the early stages of the cotton textile and jute industry in the late 19th and early 20th century respectively, overcoming the lack of market institutions and government support. From business registers, we construct a yearly panel dataset of entrepreneurs in these two industries. We find no evidence of entry patterns being affected by price shocks or pre-industrial accumulation of wealth or experience in trading in the corresponding upstream sector. Firm directors exhibited a high degree of clustering of entrepreneurs by community. The dynamics of entry is consistent with a model of network-based dynamics.
    Date: 2018–12
  9. By: Enrietti, Aldo; Geuna, Aldo; Nava, Consuelo R.; Patrucco, Pier Paolo (University of Turin)
    Abstract: By discussing the relation between the traditional Marshallian/Jacobian approach and Klepper’s concept of spinoffs and their role, this paper tries to explain the early genesis and later evolution of the Italian automotive industry, based on the for mation of the Torino’s car cluster from the late nineteenth century. Historical analysis and econometric models are integrated to identify key factors that enabled the creation and success of the automotive industry in Turin. Specifically, we investigate agglomeration economies, the role of spinoffs and institutional factors such as the level and importance of local education. Based on original archival research, we built a new database of all Italian automobile companies. Replication of Klepper’s (2007) and Boschma and Wenting’s (2007) models shows no particular influence of the Turin cluster and no early entry advantages. Our model, which integrates and extends previous contributions, confirms the existence of a spinoffs effect, and in particular the positive effect of inherited technical skills embedded in pilots. We find support also, for positive agglomeration effects at the regional level and inter industry externalities from aeronautics, a metropolitan cluster effect and the significance of metropolitan education.
    Date: 2019–04
  10. By: Gordon, Robert J; Sayed, Hassan
    Abstract: By merging KLEMS data sets and aggregating over the ten largest Western European nations (EU-10), we are able to compare and contrast productivity growth up through 2015 starting from 1950 in the U.S. and from 1972 in the EU-10. Data are provided at the aggregate level, as well as for 16 industry groups within the total economy and 11 manufacturing subindustries. The analysis focuses on outcomes over four time intervals: 1950-72, 1972-95, 1995- 2005, and 2005-15. We interpret the EU-10 performance as catching up to the U.S. in stages, with its rapid growth of 1950-72 representing a delayed adoption of the inventions that propelled U.S. productivity growth in the first half of the 20th century, and the next EU-10 stage for 1972-95 as imitating the U.S. outcome for 1950-72. A striking finding is that for the total economy the "early-to-late" productivity growth slowdown from 1972-95 to 2005-15 in the EU-10 (-1.68 percentage points) was almost identical to the U.S. slowdown from 1950-72 to 2005-15 (-1.67 percentage points). There is a very high EU-U.S. correlation in the magnitude of the early-to-late slowdown across industries. This supports our overall theme that the productivity growth slowdown from the early postwar years to the most recent decade was due to a retardation in technical change that affected the same industries by roughly the same magnitudes on both sides of the Atlantic.
    Keywords: industry decomposition; Productivity Growth; Technological change
    JEL: E01 E24 O33 O47 O51 O52
    Date: 2019–05
  11. By: Federico Droller (Universidad de Santiago de Chile); Martin Fiszbein (Boston University)
    Abstract: We investigate how historical patterns of primary production influenced development across local economies in Argentina. Our identification strategy exploits exogenous varia- tion in the composition of primary production induced by climatic features. We find that locations specializing in ranching had weaker linkages with other activities, higher con- centration in land ownership, lower population density, and less immigration than cereal- producing areas. Over time, ranching localities continued to exhibit lower population den- sity and they experienced relatively sluggish industrialization. Ultimately, ranching special- ization had large negative effects on long-run levels of income per capita and human capital. Our findings show that early patterns of production can have a crucial influence on develop- ment patterns, providing suggestive support to the staple theory of economic growth.
    Keywords: Political
    JEL: O13 O14 N56 N96 N16
    Date: 2019–06
  12. By: Ricardo Ferraz
    Abstract: A Grande Guerra (1914-1918) e a Guerra Colonial (1961-1974) foram, sem dúvida, os dois conflitos bélicos mais importantes para Portugal no seu passado recente, tendo a sua despesa militar atingido valores recorde durante esses acontecimentos. De acordo com as estimativas apresentadas no presente estudo, o Estado português terá despendido com estas guerras - a preços de hoje, e na moeda actual -, 26,5 mil milhões de euros. Deste montante, 82% terá sido gasto com a Guerra Colonial e 18% com a Grande Guerra. Ao se disponibilizarem pela primeira vez valores concretos sobre os custos dos dois principais conflitos militares em que Portugal se envolveu no século XX, espera-se oferecer um valioso contributo à História Contemporânea de Portugal e estimular outros trabalhos de investigação sobre estes temas.
    Keywords: Despesa Militar, Despesa Pública, Grande Guerra, Guerra Colonial, Portugal
    JEL: E60 H50 H56
    Date: 2019–06
  13. By: Clara Mattei (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: The framework of the Philosophy of Praxis sheds light on a fundamental Marxian insight: the approach to knowledge is deeply political. This paper studies the Philosophy of Praxis as offering a potent two-fold device. First, understood as a framework of critical analysis, the philosophy of praxis allows us to capture the strength of “pure economics” (especially in its proposed methodology) to bolster bourgeois hegemony in a critical moment for the history of capitalism, the crisis of authority of the Liberal institutions after WWI. Secondly, As the “science of dialectics” or “philosophy of knowledge” (SPN 431), the philosophy of praxis offers a tangible proposal for a radically emancipatory approach to knowledge. Such a project is certainly applicable to economics today. The paper develops a multifaceted comparison between “pure economics” and “critical economics”. While the former is the approach that characterized Marginalist thinkers and is still dominant today, the latter is inspired by the philosophy of praxis as a positive alternative.
    Date: 2019–06
  14. By: Fukao, Kyoji; Paul, Saumik
    Abstract: This paper examines the drivers of the long-run structural transformation in Japan. We use a dynamic input-output framework that decomposes the reallocation of the total output across sectors into two components: the Engel effect (demand side) and the Baumol effect (supply side). To perform this task, we employ 13 seven-sector input-output tables spanning 100 years (1885 to 1985). The results show that the Engel effect was the key explanatory factor in more than 60% of the sector-period cases in the pre-WWII period, while the Baumol effect drove structural transformation in more than 75% of such cases in the post-WWII period. Detailed decomposition results suggest that in most of the sectors (agriculture, commerce and services, food, textiles and transport, communication and utilities), changes in private consumption were the dominant force behind the demand-side explanations. The Engel effect was found to be the strongest in the commerce and services sector, which contributed to the rapid growth of GDP in Japan throughout the 20th century
    Keywords: long-run structural transformation, the Engel effect, Baumol’s cost disease effect, sectoral productivity growth
    JEL: O40 O10
    Date: 2019–05
  15. By: Boberg-Fazlic, Nina; Sharp, Paul
    Abstract: Despite the growing literature on the impact of immigration, little is known about the role existing migrant settlements can play for knowledge transmission. We present a case which can illustrate this important mechanism and hypothesize that nineteenth century Danish-American communities helped spread knowledge on modern dairying to rural America. From around 1880, Denmark developed rapidly and by 1890 it was a world-leading dairy producer. Using a difference-in-differences strategy, and data taken from the US census and Danish emigration archives, we find that counties with more Danes in 1880 subsequently both specialized in dairying and used more modern practices.
    Keywords: dairying; Immigration; Knowledge Spillovers; technology
    JEL: F22 J61 N11 N31 N51 O33 Q16
    Date: 2019–05
  16. By: Ögren, Anders (Department of Economic History, Lund University)
    Abstract: A currency union is when several independent sovereign nations share a common currency. This has been a recurring phenomenon in monetary history. In this article I study the theoretical foundations of such unions, and discuss some important currency unions in history, most notably the case of the US. Finally I contrast the design of the EMU with economic theories and historical experiences of currency unions.
    Keywords: Central banks; Fiscal systems; Monetary theory; Monetary policy; Optimum Currency Areas
    JEL: E42 F33 N11 N13
    Date: 2019–06–14
  17. By: Deng, Kent; Shengmin, Sun
    Abstract: It has long been puzzled why and how China’s population was able to multiply four-fold from circa 1750 to 1850. Descriptions/explanations as well as reservations/suspicions vary widely and the debate can be energetic and uncompromising at the same time. This research aims to settle some aspects of the debate both qualitatively by looking at the interplay between China’s resource endowments (e.g. farmland), technology (new crops), institutions (landownership, aided migration, disaster relief and so forth) and exogenous shocks (wars and natural disasters) on the one hand, and quantitatively by deploying empirical test on correlations between populations growth and factors that influenced that growth. Our key findings indicate that China’s demographic upsurge during the Qing Period (1644-1911) was achieved with a synergy of positive factors and mainly by the non-market sector.
    Keywords: Exogenous shocks; Living standards; New technology; Population growth; Resource endowments; Tax burden; Urban food prices
    JEL: N0 E6
    Date: 2019–01–01
  18. By: Nuvolari, Alessandro (Institute of Economics, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Pisa); Russo, Emanuele (Institute of Economics, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Pisa)
    Abstract: Along the development path, countries experience large transformations in their economic structure as productive resources move towards different economic activities. “Modern economic growth” is also associated with a self-sustained process of technical change which leads to the emergence of new products and sectors characterized by different scopes for productivity gains and demand growth. In this paper we study the interactions between structural change and technological progress from a long-term perspective. We first analyze the secular patterns of structural change across agriculture, manufacturing and services using historical data in the attempt to test some broad conjectures concerning sectoral reallocations at different stages of development (i.e. the so-called Petty-Clark law) and discuss the specific role of manufacturing as an engine of growth. Second, we provide an overview of the literature on sectoral innovation patterns as well as of recent evidence linking structural transformations and sector-specific technological opportunities to aggregate productivity growth. In the final part we present productivity decompositions using a sectoral innovation taxonomy to study the contribution of different groups of activities characterized by heterogeneous innovation patterns. Our results suggest that structural change towards knowledge-intensive activities provides a source of productivity growth in both developing and advanced countries. In turn, this points at the need for a more disaggregated analysis of structural change to capture the diversity in the rate and direction of technical progress across sectors.
    Keywords: Long-run development, structural change, technical change, productivity growth
    JEL: O10 O14 O30
    Date: 2019–06–12
  19. By: Ortona, Guido
    Abstract: In an unknown date of the eighth or ninth century E. V., the Khazar Empire adopted Judaism as its State religion. A legend of how this choice was made makes a quite interesting textbook case of the use of the Condorcet rule, and allows once more to appreciate its merits. Possibly more interestingly, it also illustrates a failure of the Condorcet rule. We know that in the absence of the Condorcet cycle the Condorcet rule is immune from strategic voting; as we will see, actually it is exposed to it, albeit in a peculiar way and in a peculiar (but relevant) setting. This very short note deals both with the use of the rule by the King of the Khazars according to the legend (sect. 3), and with its failure (sect. 4 and 5). A preliminary section summarizes very briefly the history of the conversion.
    Date: 2019–06
  20. By: Eoin McLaughlin (Cork University Business School, University College Cork); Rowena Pecchenino (Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, Maynooth University, National University of Ireland, Maynooth)
    Abstract: In the decade before the famine, Ireland experienced a boom in Microfinance Institutions (MFIs). This paper analyses the motivations of MFI proponents and practitioners, and finds evidence linking the boom in MFIs with the introduction of the poor law in 1838. Many contemporary writers saw microfinance as a complex tax avoidance/reduction scheme that could lessen the burden on rate payers by helping the poor help themselves. The link between MFIs and the poor law is confirmed by an econometric analysis of MFIs at the level of the poor law union.
    Keywords: microfinance, inequality, development, Ireland
    JEL: G21 H75 I38 N23 N33 N83
    Date: 2019–05
  21. By: Víctor González-Díez (Banco de España); Enrique Moral-Benito (Banco de España)
    Abstract: The historical experience and the economic literature show that the process of structural change of the economies towards more advanced stages of development is associated to a particular pattern in the evolution of the sectorial composition of economic activity. In a first stage, the share in manufacturing increases while the share in agriculture decreases. In a second stage, the share in manufacturing starts decreasing, and the share in services starts increasing. This work presents a brief overview of the available empirical evidence about this process of structural change at international level, highlighting the case of the Spanish economy. As a result of the rapid process of structural change during the last four decades, the productive structure of the Spanish economy has converged towards that of the European countries, with higher shares in services and manufacturing, and a lower share in agriculture. Beyond the impact of cyclical fluctuations, we can expect increases in the services share t the expense of manufacturing and agriculture share. According to the literature, these patterns can be related with demand forces (citizen’s preferences), supply forces (different trends in sectorial productivity), or a combination of both due to the openness to international trade, which can accelerate the process. Therefore, a deep investigation of the causes of this phenomenon of structural change in the Spanish case is essential inasmuch the future development of the process will determine long-run economic growth.
    Keywords: structural change, economic sectors, sectorial analysis, Spanish economy
    JEL: O11 O14 O4
    Date: 2019–05
  22. By: Uri Dadush
    Abstract: Imagining world trade without the WTO/GATT system. It was after all, the case through recorded history until around 1950. But today’s economies are far more globally integrated than in the past, and information technologies which facilitate communication and coordination are clearly pointing to even more integration in the future. Under a no-WTO scenario, this brief formulates seven predictions.
    Date: 2019–04
  23. By: Kieron J. Barclay (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); Robyn Donrovich Thorén; Heidi A. Hanson; Ken R. Smith
    Abstract: Although the increase in mortality following widowhood has been widely studied, much less is known about how this pattern varies across less common household structures. Polygamous marriages are still prevalent across much of the world, but whether and how mortality varies following the death of a partner has not been studied in polygamous relationships. In this study we use data from the Utah Population Database to examine the relationship between marital status and mortality in polygamous marriages in 19th century Utah. With data on 110,952 women and 106,898 men, we particularly focus on whether the widowhood mortality effect varies between monogamous and polygamous marriages. We examine how the number of wife deaths affects male mortality in polygamous marriages, how the death of a sister wife, meaning other women with whom they share a husband, affects female mortality relative to the death of a husband, as well as how marriage order amongst sister wives affects the mortality of women in polygamous marriages. For women we find that the death of a husband in polygamous marriages increases mortality to a similar extent as in monogamous marriages, while the death of a sister wife does not have a qualitatively different effect on mortality than the death of the husband. Marriage order does not play a role in the mortality of women in polygamous marriages in this historical context. For men we find that the death of one wife in a polygamous marriage increases mortality to a lesser extent than it does for men in monogamous marriages. For men there is a dose-response effect to losing additional wives. We discuss these findings in relation to theories regarding the mechanisms driving the widowhood mortality effect.
    Keywords: Utah, adult mortality, polygamy, widowhood
    JEL: J1 Z0
    Date: 2019–06
  24. By: Hanming Fang (Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania); Linke Hou (Shandong University); Mingxing Liu (Peking University); Lixin Colin Xu (World Bank); Pengfei Zhang (Peking University)
    Abstract: We develop a theoretical model of how factional affiliation and local accountability can shape the policy choices of local officials who are concerned about political survivals, and subsequently affect the long-term local development. We provide empirical evidence in support of the theoretical predictions using county-level variations in development performance in Fujian Province in China. When the Communist armies took over Fujian Province from the Nationalist control circa 1949, communist cadres from two different army factions were assigned as county leaders. For decades the Fujian Provincial Standing Committee of the Communist Party was dominated by members from one particular faction, which we refer to as the strong faction. Counties also differed in terms of whether a local guerrilla presence had existed prior to the Communist takeover. We argue that county leaders from the strong faction were less likely to pursue policies friendly to local development because their political survival more heavily relied on their loyalty to the provincial leader than on the grassroots support from local residents. By contrast, the political survival of county leaders from the weak faction largely depended on local grassroots support, which they could best secure if they focused on local development. In addition, a guerrilla presence in a county further improved development performance either by intensifying the local accountability of the county leader, or by better facilitating the provision of local public goods beneficial to development. We find consistent and robust evidence supporting these assumptions. Being affiliated with weak factions and having local accountability are both associated with sizable long-term benefits that are evident in terms of a county’s growth and level of private-sector development, its citizens’ education levels, and their survival rates during the Great Chinese Famine. We also find that being affiliated with the strong faction and adopting pro-local policies are associated with higher likelihood of a local leader’s political survival.
    Keywords: Local Accountability; Factional Politics; Political Survival; Development Performance; Famine
    JEL: O1 O43 H70 D72
    Date: 2019–05–29
  25. By: Bernard Poirine (GDI - Gouvernance et développement insulaire - UPF - Université de la Polynésie Française); Vincent Dropsy (GDI - Gouvernance et développement insulaire - UPF - Université de la Polynésie Française)
    Abstract: The development gap between countries in tropical and temperate zones has been attributed to a variety of factors. Using data from the World Values Survey, we find that social norms about thrift, as opposed to sharing, vary with the length of the winter season. We also show that this cultural dimension "thrift versus sharing" and institutional quality both have an independent effect on contemporary economic outcomes. This suggests that the tropical development gap might be the consequence of deep-rooted effects of pre-industrial agro-climatic conditions on both the quality of institutions and social norms about thrift versus sharing that fostered development in the industrial era.
    Keywords: Social norms,Cultural evolution,Time preference,Long-term orientation,Economic development,Comparative development
    Date: 2018–06
  26. By: Laixun Zhao (Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration (RIEB), Kobe University, Japan)
    Abstract: In this paper, I examine the Sino-U.S. trade disputes from less-talked about angles: institutional differences, SOEs, hukou control and contemporary Chinese history. Based on these, I provide suggestions for future cooperation and improvement.
    Keywords: China, US, Trade Disputes, Institutions, East-Asian Cooperation
    Date: 2019–04
  27. By: David Maddy (ProCredit Holding); Clara Mattei (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: We offer an interpretative framework to analyze a recurrent phenomenon of capitalism: working classes oft e n a ppro ve of polici es that are detrimental to their material conditions. We focus on the mechanism of t he diffusion of economic ideas from treatise to the domain of public opinion. The work of novelist Ayn Rand popularizes market­ liberal, inequality-based economic doctrines present in the work of Ludwig von Mises. We argue that the economic justification of inequalit y was successfully tra nsmit ted through the mechanism of pov ert y sha me that emerges out of Rand 's influential Atlas Shrugged. Through its didactic narrative and abusive language the reader is powerfully taught that if they are not successful in the market society, the reason lies in their own personal deficiency and inferiority. This conception is internalized chiefly through the emotion of shame. Through the mechanism of "ot hering " class solidarity breaks down and social demands languish, thus the unequal status quo is preserved.
    Keywords: Ayn Rand, Ludwig von Mises, Self-Help, American Conservative Movement , Poverty Shame
    Date: 2019–06
  28. By: Maja Pedersen (University of Southern Denmark); Claudia Riani (I.R.T.A. - Leonardo, Pisa); Paul Sharp (University of Southern Denmark)
    Abstract: Although a number of studies have attempted to test the hypothesis of a “Malthusian” pre-industrial world, few have focused on countries outside the UK, or on the “post-Malthusian” regime postulated by Unified Growth Theory. The present work is the first to test explicitly for the post-Malthusian regime in a setting outside the UK and Scandinavia, namely northern Italy from 1650. Employing a cointegrated VAR model, we find evidence that this part of the world does not fit cleanly into the Malthusian or post-Malthusian worlds, suggesting room for an extension of the simple Malthusian model.
    Keywords: Cointegration, Italy, Malthusian, post-Malthusian
    JEL: J1 N33 O4
    Date: 2019–06

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