Religion and Income: Heterogeneity between Countries
Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper No. 2008-014/3
40 Pages Posted: 31 Jan 2008
Date Written: January 28, 2008
This paper tests whether behaviour of households in different countries is homogeneous with respect to the influence of religion on income. The violation of the homogeneity assumption would have two consequences. First, results based on country studies might not be applicable to other countries. Second, one should be careful when pooling cross-country data in this type of research. Data at household level of the European and World Values Survey are pooled for 25 Western countries. We estimate simultaneously an income and a religion equation to correct for the endogeneity of religiosity. We find that estimation outcomes are different between low and high-income countries. Whereas church membership is found to have a positive effect on income for high-income countries, this effect is negative for low-income countries. This result is robust to denominational distribution, participation effects and alternative measures of religiosity.
Keywords: Income, Religious Membership, Religious Participation
JEL Classification: Z12, D31
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation