nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2020‒09‒28
two papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la República

  1. Long-Term Effects of Conditional Cash Transfers on Children: The Brazilian Case By Oliveira, Gabriel Lyrio; Chagas, Andre Luis Squarize
  2. Using Google data to understand governments’ approval in Latin America By Nathalia Montoya; Sebastián Nieto-Parra; René Orozco; Juan Vázquez Zamora

  1. By: Oliveira, Gabriel Lyrio; Chagas, Andre Luis Squarize
    Abstract: In this paper, we present some long-term effects of the largest Conditional Cash Transfers program in the world, and one of the pioneers, the Bolsa Família Program (BFP). We focus on the effects on Schooling attained in early adulthood and Labor Market outcomes of individuals more or less exposed during their childhood. The estimates were enabled by linking identified data from Formal Labor Market, BFP Payment Records, and the Single Registry (SR). In this Natural Experiment, the main identification strategy relies on a rich set of control variables, and on the fact that the release of BFP resources for registered families is automatized and based on municipality poverty parameters estimated by the government. In an alternative identification strategy, we consider an instrumental variable, the observed proxy for the municipality effort to register vulnerable families. These strategies help to solve the potential selection bias of families to the SR, and consequently to the treatment. Nonetheless, since the program selects the most vulnerable families, the threats to the identification suggest that the estimates are lower bounds. Our main results show positive long-term effects on Schooling, and on the Formal Labor Market participation, while mixed results are observed for Earnings. Heterogeneity tests suggest that the effects are stronger for boys, for smaller cities, and for families with never formally employed parents.
    Keywords: Conditional Cash Transfers; Long-term effects; Human Capital; Labor Market; Bolsa Família
    JEL: I25 I38 J24 O15
    Date: 2020–09–11
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:spa:wpaper:2020wpecon16&r=all
  2. By: Nathalia Montoya; Sebastián Nieto-Parra; René Orozco; Juan Vázquez Zamora
    Abstract: This paper studies the potential drivers of governments’ approval rates in 18 Latin American countries using Internet search query data from Google Trends and traditional data sources. It employs monthly panel data between January 2006 and December 2015. The analysis tests several specifications including traditional explanatory variables of governments’ approval rates – i.e. inflation, unemployment rate, GDP growth, output gap – and subjective explanatory variables – e.g. perception of corruption and insecurity. For the latter, it uses Internet search query data to proxy citizens’ main social concerns, which are expected to drive governments’ approval rates. The results show that the perception of corruption and insecurity, and complaints about public services have a statistically significant association with governments’ approval rates. This paper also discusses the potential of Internet search query data as a tool for policy makers to understand better citizens’ perceptions, since it provides highly anonymous and high-frequency series in real-time.
    Keywords: big data, citizens’ perceptions, governments’ approval, Latin America, social contract
    JEL: D72 H11 O3
    Date: 2020–09–28
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:oec:devaaa:343-en&r=all

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