How does "poverty of parents" affect child welfare? Empirical evidence from Argentina

Echeverría, Lucía; Menon, Martina y Perali, Federico (2019). How does "poverty of parents" affect child welfare? Empirical evidence from Argentina. Comunicación presentada en 8 Meeting of the Society for the Study of Economic Inequality (ECINEQ), Paris [FRA], July 3-5, 2019.

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Children of poor parents have a higher exposure to the risk of poverty ("poverty of parents"). However, allocation of resources inside the household may become a viable coping strategy. We analyze weather single-parents allocate resources to children in the same way as two-parent households, and if intra-household behavior of single-parents acts as a protection factor for children, mitigating their risk of poverty and increasing their well-being. We model households in a collective framework using consumption data from Argentina from three consecutive expenditures surveys (1996, 2004 and 2012), and compare intra-household behavior over three different socio-economic contexts. We estimate a collective quadratic demand system following a structural approach to identify the fraction of total household expenditure that is devoted to children and adults, exploiting the observability of assignable goods. We find evidence indicating that distribution of household resources is pro-child in both family structures, and that single-headed households allocate a higher proportion of their lower income than two-parent households. Further, even though single- parents are relatively poorer, there is no significant difference between single-parents and two-parents in terms of child poverty risk. Results suggests that single-parents develop mechanisms to protect children via intra-household behavior. We also identify characteristics of intra-household behavior that are persistent in time, such as the positive impact on children's share of resources if the mother is employed in two-parent families, and a pro-female gender bias in expenditure if children are females.

Tipo de Documento: Documento de Conferencia (Paper)
Conferencia: 8 Meeting of the Society for the Study of Economic Inequality (ECINEQ)
Inst. Patrocinadora: Paris School of Economics
  • UNSPECIFIED: Julio 2019
Palabras Clave: Distribución Intrahogar, Pobreza, Niños, Bienestar, Padres
Filiación: Facultad de Cs. Económicas y Sociales > Centro de Inv. Económicas y Sociales > Grupo Economía Agraria
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