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Abstract

This thesis contains three standalone papers, which all belong to development economics. They deal with issues related to (i) family reunification, (ii) remittances and households' consumption, (iii) the pricing of remittances. A common denominator of the papers is that they all try to raise curiosity in topics or contexts that have been relatively neglected so far. In order to address the various research questions, I have worked with different databases, different types of agents (households, firms), and different techniques of analysis. The first paper introduces the concept of family reunification in economics by building a theoretical model in which the household chooses the optimal location as well as the optimal timing of reunification. Then, the paper tests the predictions in the context of migration between Africa and Europe (MAFE data) using survival analysis. The second paper investigates the changes of consumption due to remittances in the context of Tajikistan. Household survey data over 2007 to 2011 enables a panel data analysis where the remittances, suspected to be endogenous, are instrumented. The paper advocates that remittances can be misallocated and conspicuously spent rather than, for example, pointed toward education expenditures. The third paper uncovers the price sensitivity of remittances to a demand shock. It uses environmental disasters to instrument the demand for remittances. The paper exploits firm-level as well as macroeconomic quarterly data. I find that the price increases with a delay from one to five quarters after the change in demand occurred and that this increase is highly dependent on the type of transfer. Remittances market suffers from frictions and is incomplete.

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