Essays on financial frictions, misallocation and development dynamics
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This dissertation consists of three chapters on financial friction, misallocation and development dynamics. The first chapter considers how financial frictions and mobility distortions generate the persistence of post-reform development dynamics. I build a general equilibrium model and calibrate it to China. The mobility distortion is an occupation distortion that restricts a proportion of agents to the low-productive sector. A removal of distortions triggers the transition of the economy. Using a calibrated version of the model, the transition path displays slow convergence and mimics the patterns observed in data. The mobility distortion creates high-ability, but poor, agents before the reform. This provides a channel for financial frictions to have longer effect after the reform. Compared with the literature that uses tax distortions, the economy with mobility distortions generates slower convergence. The second chapter is a welfare analysis of the well-documented depressed migrant wage in China from a dynamic perspective. The depressed migrant wage per se attracts fewer migrant workers and lowers the migrants' consumption and the aggregate output. However, it encourages urban entrepreneurs to substitute capital for labor, relaxing the effect of financial frictions. The net effect on output and consumption depends on the stage of development. Initially, it benefits the economy by speeding up TFP growth and capital accumulation in the urban sector. In the later stage, owing to low consumption of migrants, policy intervention can increase aggregate consumption and output. The third chapter investigates why the intergenerational income mobility decreases and the inequality increase for China over the past 30 years. I propose a theoretical overlapping generation model with missing capital markets, increasing the return to human capital and increasing education cost to explain these facts. After the economic reform happens, all levels of wages go up and all families accumulate and update human capital. However, the increasing education cost and credit constraint prevent the children from rural families from accumulating human capital quickly. The urban families accumulate human capital faster than the rural families. These predictions from the model are verified in the census data. Whether this process continues or not depends on the subsidy of education. Government education policy can improve the allocation of education in the economy.