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Oh Brother! Testing the Etiology of Sibling Effects Using External Cash Transfers

James Manley (), Lia Fernald and Paul Gertler ()
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Lia Fernald: School of Public Health, UC Berkeley

No 2012-03, Working Papers from Towson University, Department of Economics

Abstract: Siblings can slow child development, but distinguishing intrinsic from economic circumstances has been more difficult. The grants of the Oportunidades Mexican welfare program allo w us to test this linkage. We investigate whether transfers increase firstborn characteristics faster than other children�s characteristics, and whether the observed negative effects of being part of a larger set of siblings stem from having to share household resources. We find that firstborn children get larger physical and verbal benefits from transfers, but beha vioral improvements are less tied to cash than to program participation. Children in larger households seem resource constrained; there, transfers have larger impacts.

Keywords: PROGRESA; Oportunidades; Mexico; conditional cash transf ers; child development; child health; sibling effects; intrahousehold allocation. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O12 J13 I38 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem
Date: 2012-03, Revised 2012-03
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