Do remittances and social assistance have different impacts on expenditure patterns of recipient households? : The Moldovan case

J. Waidler, J.S. Hagen-Zanker, F. Gassmann, M. Siegel

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Abstract

Do remittances and social assistance have different impacts on household
expenditure patterns? While two separate strands of literature have
looked at how social assistance or remittances have been spent, few
studies have compared them directly. Using data from a nationally
representative household survey conducted in Moldova in 2011, this paper
assesses the impact both types of transfers have on household
expenditure patterns. Contrary to the common assumption that money is
fungible, we find that social assistance and remittances have different
impacts on expenditure patterns (having controlled for potential
endogeneity). This research highlights that income source matters and
that different incomes may have different poverty impacts. In our
sample, the two types of transfers are received by different, but to
some extent overlapping population groups. The fact that the two
transfers are spent in different ways means that, to some extent, social
assistance and remittances are complements rather than substitutes.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationMaastricht
PublisherUNU-MERIT
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

Publication series

SeriesUNU-MERIT Working Papers
Number072

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