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A theory of the competitive saving motive

Qingyuan Du and Shang-Jin Wei

Journal of International Economics, 2013, vol. 91, issue 2, 275-289

Abstract: Motivated by recent empirical work, this paper formalizes a theory of competitive savings — an arms race in household savings for mating competition that is made more fierce by an increase in the male-to-female ratio in the pre-marital cohort. Relative to the empirical work, the theory can clarify a number of important questions: What determines the strength of the savings response by males (or households with a son)? Can women (or households with a daughter) dis-save? What are the conditions under which aggregate savings would go up in response to a higher sex ratio? This theory can potentially help to understand the savings patterns in China, India, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, and other economies that have experienced a dramatic increase in the pre-marital sex ratio.

Keywords: Surplus men; Savings race; Trade surplus; Global imbalances (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F3 F4 J1 J7 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2013
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Working Paper: A Theory of the Competitive Saving Motive (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: A Theory of the Competitive Saving Motive (2013) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:inecon:v:91:y:2013:i:2:p:275-289

DOI: 10.1016/j.jinteco.2013.09.003

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