nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2022‒04‒04
five papers chosen by

  1. The COVID-19 Pandemic in Latin American and Caribbean countries: The Labor Supply Impact by Gender By Mariana Viollaz; Mauricio Salazar-Saenz; Luca Flabbim; Monserrat Bustelo; Mariano Bosch
  2. COVID-19 in Uruguay: A survey of policy responses and their impact By Elizabeth Bucacos; Patricia Carballo; Miguel Mello; Jorge Ponce
  3. Impacto de un programa de pensiones no contributivas en la oferta laboral del hogar. El caso de Previência Rural en Brasil By Claudia Vázquez
  4. ¿Qué sabemos sobre los programas de transferencias no contributivas en Uruguay? Una síntesis de resultados de investigación disponibles sobre el PANES, AFAM-PE y TUS By Ivone Perazzo; Analía Rivero; Andrea Vigorito
  5. Dynamic effects of smoking bans on addictive behavior among young adults By Camila Steffens; Paula Pereda

  1. By: Mariana Viollaz (CEDLAS-IIE-FCE-UNLP and IZA); Mauricio Salazar-Saenz (Pontificia Universidad Javeriana); Luca Flabbim (University of North Carolina); Monserrat Bustelo (Inter-American Development Bank); Mariano Bosch (Inter-American Development Bank)
    Abstract: We study the labor supply impact of the COVID-19 pandemic by gender in four Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) countries: Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic, and Mexico. To identify the impact, we compare labor market stocks and labor market flows over four quarters for a set of balanced panel samples of comparable workers before and after the pandemic. We find that the pandemic has negatively affected the labor market status of both men and women, but that the effect is significantly stronger for women, magnifying the already large gender gaps that characterize LAC countries. The main channel through which this stronger impact is taking place is the increase in child care work affecting women with school-age children.
    JEL: J6 J16 J46 O10 O17
    Date: 2022–04
  2. By: Elizabeth Bucacos (Banco Central del Uruguay); Patricia Carballo (Banco Central del Uruguay); Miguel Mello (Banco Central del Uruguay); Jorge Ponce (Banco Central del Uruguay)
    Abstract: COVID-19 implied an overwhelming shock with large economic consequences. In this paper, we provide an evaluation of the impact of the social, economic, and financial policy measures undertaken to ameliorate its negative consequences in Uruguay. We start by surveying the immediate impact of the shock and the main policy responses. Next, we take a threefold approach to evaluate their impact on GDP, inflation, inflation expectations, investment, consumption, hours worked and firms’ financing. The results show that the policy response had a significant effect on mitigating the negative impact of the pandemic.
    Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic, policy response, impact evaluation, Uruguay
    JEL: E50 E60
    Date: 2022
  3. By: Claudia Vázquez (Departamento de Economía, Universidad de San Andrés)
    Abstract: En este trabajo utilizamos datos provenientes de una muestra aleatoria del Censo de 2010 en Brasil. Aprovechando la discontinuidad en la estructura de beneficios de PR implementamos un diseño de Regresión Discontinua (RD) para identificar el efecto causal del programa en las variables de interés. Los resultados indican que el impacto local del programa es una reducción de 11 puntos porcentuales (-27%) en la probabilidad de estar ocupado/a para los beneficiarios directos y una reducción estadísticamente significativa, pero de menor magnitud (3,3 pp. en promedio), para los jóvenes de entre 18 y 24 años que conviven en el hogar. No se detectan efectos significativos en la oferta laboral de otros adultos mayores de 24 años que viven en el hogar.
    Date: 2022–03
  4. By: Ivone Perazzo (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y de Administración. Instituto de Economía); Analía Rivero (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y de Administración. Instituto de Economía); Andrea Vigorito (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y de Administración. Instituto de Economía)
    Abstract: This document is part of a larger project "Beliefs, perceptions and attitudes about public income transfers in Uruguay", developed by the research group Ethics, Justice and Economics, with the support of Fondo Artículo 2, Comisión de Investigación Científica (Universidad de la Republic). In this component, we summarize the results of the available studies addressing the design, implementation and main impacts of Plan Nacional de Atención a la Emergencia Social (PANES), Asignaciones Familiares-Plan de Equidad (AFAM-PE) y la Tarjeta Uruguay Social (TUS). The studies provide important elements for the ongoing discussion on the characteristics of these interventions. On the one hand, they raise a set of issues regarding the design of the current system an its potential expansion such as their articulation with the social security and income tax systems and schedules; labor market conditions; and other public policies, as the National Care System. On the other hand, they problematize the current conditionalities in several ways (exclusion errors, lack of clarity, regressive policy, etc.). At the same time, they highlight that the complexity of the beneficiary selection systems might inhibit the possibility of claiming. The role of these benefits in expanding the coverage of the social protection system is highlighted, as it is their moderate effect on reducing poverty and income inequality. Regarding impacts, effects have been found in the areas of health and access to the educational system, whereas none of the programs significantly altered household spending patterns. Nor were the perceptions of the beneficiaries substantially modified, although recently there are signs of stigmatization. Already from PANES it is highlighted that the effects of greater trust in the government and MIDES do not translate into greater social cohesion. While in general terms the fertility patterns and labor participation did not change substantially, the main unwanted effects refer to the increase in the probability f being engaged in informal employment, which can be linked to design aspects. In the case of TUS differ in terms of its impacts on labour force attachment and dwelling conditions, which suggests that further research is required. Finally, there is a sharp contrast between research results and the systematized perceptions from the remaining components of the project (focus groups, media analysis or opinion polls), which raises important challenges for the design of policies for scientific dissemination and relationship with broader audiences.
    Keywords: non contributory cash transfers, AFAM-PE, TUS, PANES, Uruguay, impact evaluation, poverty, income
    JEL: I38 H53 D30
    Date: 2021–12
  5. By: Camila Steffens; Paula Pereda
    Abstract: urrent evidence is still mixed regarding the effectiveness of smoking bans for reducing firsthand smoking. We provide novel insights about their effects on young adults' smoking prevalence, initiation and cessation. We also highlight the importance of considering enforcement and addiction levels when evaluating these policies. Exploiting the staggered roll-out of smoking bans across Brazilian capitals within a difference-in-differences framework, we find that they reduced smoking prevalence by at least 9% but only when strongly enforced. The effect is primarily explained by cessation among youths with low levels of addiction. We find no impacts on initiation, which could be partly explained by the fact that smoking initiation among Brazilians typically happens before the legal age to purchase tobacco products.
    Keywords: Smoking bans; Addiction; Policy enforcement
    JEL: D04 D12 I12 I18
    Date: 2022–03–22

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.