Volume 20 - Article 26 | Pages 623-656

Does fertility decrease household consumption?: An analysis of poverty dynamics and fertility in Indonesia

By Jungho Kim, Henriette Engelhardt, Alexia Prskawetz, Arnstein Aassve

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Date received:12 Jun 2006
Date published:05 Jun 2009
Word count:7841
Keywords:consumption, equivalence scale, fertility, Indonesia, poverty dynamics
DOI:10.4054/DemRes.2009.20.26
 

Abstract

This paper presents an empirical analysis of the relationship between fertility and a direct measure of poverty for Indonesia, a country, which has experienced unprecedented economic growth and sharp fertility declines over recent decades. It focuses on illustrating the sensitivity of the effect of fertility on household consumption with respect to the equivalence scale by applying the propensity score matching method. The analysis suggests that a newborn child decreases household consumption per person by 20 percent within four years. When the estimates of equivalence scales implied by the Indonesian sample are applied, the effect of a child on household consumption is still negative, but the magnitudes are in the range from 20 to 65 percent of that found with the per-capita expenditure as a measure of consumption. Therefore, it is suggested that the analysis based on the conventional measure of poverty is likely to exaggerate the effect of fertility on poverty at least because of the neglect of the proper equivalence scale.

Author's Affiliation

Jungho Kim - Korea Development Institute, Korea, Republic Of [Email]
Henriette Engelhardt - Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg, Germany [Email]
Alexia Prskawetz - Vienna University of Technology, Austria [Email]
Arnstein Aassve - Università Bocconi, Milano, Italy [Email]

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