Does Inheritance Law Reform Improve Women's Access to Capital? Evidence from Urban India

30 Pages Posted: 16 Jul 2014

See all articles by Klaus Deininger

Klaus Deininger

World Bank - Development Economics Group (DEC); World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Songqing Jin

Zhejiang University - China Academy for Rural Development; World Bank

Hari Nagarajan

Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA)

Fang Xia

University of International Business and Economics (UIBE); World Bank

Date Written: April 1, 2013

Abstract

This paper explores the impacts of the amendment to the 1956 Hindu Succession Act on Hindu females’ intergenerational transfers of physical and human capital. Information on the timing of three generations’ key life events helps isolate the causal effects. Our primary estimation strategy is a difference-in-difference estimator in which we compare the share of total assets received by male and female siblings in the same household between households whose heads died before and after the amendment. In the case of human capital investment, we compare primary education attainment of young cohorts who were potentially benefit from the reform and the older cohorts who were unlikely to benefit from the reform. In light of the fact that the amendment applies only to Hindus but not to Muslims, we compare the results between Hindus and Muslims for a robustness check. The results suggest that the amendment increased the share of total physical assets received by Hindu females who were single before the reform by 0.216. They also point towards an increase in the share of gifts transferred to Hindu females by 0.147. Hindu girls gained 0.594 years of more primary education than boys relative to the old cohort after the amendment.

Keywords: Gender, India, Inheritance law, Intergenerational transfers

Suggested Citation

Deininger, Klaus and Jin, Songqing and Nagarajan, Hari and Xia, Fang, Does Inheritance Law Reform Improve Women's Access to Capital? Evidence from Urban India (April 1, 2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2466863 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2466863

Klaus Deininger

World Bank - Development Economics Group (DEC) ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/kdeininger

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

1818 H. Street, N.W.
MSN3-311
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Songqing Jin

Zhejiang University - China Academy for Rural Development ( email )

Qizhen Building, Zijingang Campus,ZJU
Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310058
China

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Hari Nagarajan (Contact Author)

Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA) ( email )

Anand - 388 001
India

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.irma.ac.in/ifaculty/facultydetails.php?fid=428

Fang Xia

University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) ( email )

10, Huixin Dongjie
Changyang District
Beijing, Beijing 100029
China

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

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