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American Economic Review: Vol. 99 No. 4 (September 2009)

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Spousal Control and Intra-household Decision Making: An Experimental Study in the Philippines

Article Citation

Ashraf, Nava. 2009. "Spousal Control and Intra-household Decision Making: An Experimental Study in the Philippines." American Economic Review, 99(4): 1245-77.

DOI: 10.1257/aer.99.4.1245

Abstract

I elicit causal effects of spousal observability and communication on financial choices of married individuals in the Philippines. When choices are private, men put money into their personal accounts. When choices are observable, men commit money to consumption for their own benefit. When required to communicate, men put money into their wives' account. These strong treatment effects on men, but not women, appear related more to control than to gender: men whose wives control household savings respond more strongly to the treatment and women whose husbands control savings exhibit the same response. Changes in information and communication interact with underlying control to produce mutable gender-specific outcomes. (JEL D13, D14, J12, J16, O15)

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Authors

Ashraf, Nava (Harvard U)

JEL Classifications

D13: Household Production and Intrahousehold Allocation
D14: Personal Finance
J12: Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure; Domestic Abuse
J16: Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
O15: Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration


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