Publications - Working Papers - Work in Progress
Published in Labour Economics, 2023
Coverage: Banxico , El CEO , 24 Horas , El Financiero , IMCO , El Financiero (2) , Vox LACEA , GatoPardo
In January 2019, in an effort to boost activity on the northern Mexican border, the authorities increased the minimum wage by 100 percent and decreased the value-added tax (VAT) by half. Disentangling both effects, we find increments in prices due to the minimum wage hike that were more than offset by the decreases associated with the VAT. In the absence of both policy changes, average prices would have been higher. The share of informal labor in the production of different goods seems to be playing a role in the impact of the minimum wage on prices.
Download --- Download from Labour Economics
Published in World Development, 2020
Coverage: HKUST-IEMS , La Silla Vacia
I estimate the effect of the minimum wage on formal and informal wages and employment in Colombia. I exploit an unexpected increase in the real minimum wage during the 1999 Colombian economic crisis to estimate short-term effects of the minimum wage along the wage distribution in both sectors. I find evidence of wage responses, with a stronger incidence in the formal sector.
Download --- Download from World Development --- Replication Files
Published in IDB Policy Briefs, 2014
Fiscal policy in Latin America has been historically imprudent and continues to be viewed with skepticism. At the same time, most countries have remained out of trouble for several years and were able to successfully conduct proactive countercyclical fiscal policy to fight the Great Recession, a historical first. This paper examines the last decade to assess progress, highlight weaknesses, and chart the way forward.
Published in Desarrollo y Sociedad, 2010
Using household data from the 2006-2007 Households Income and Expenditure survey, we estimate four different specifications of demand systems for Colombia. We also calculate expenditure, income and price elasticities for different groups of goods.
We estimate the contribution of average workplace-specific wage premia, worker-level characteristics, and assortative matching on the variance of wages in Mexico. We find that assortative matching explains between 16% and 19% of total wage variance, while worker- and workplace-specific factors contribute between 35% to 42% and 33% to 38%, correspondingly. The importance of workplace factors in determining wage inequality correlates negatively with regional economic development.
Coverage: CAF Transport Infrastructure for the Development of Latin America
Does transit infrastructure reduce labor market power? This paper estimates the effects of a large subway expansion on local labor market outcomes in Santiago, Chile. We find changes in work locations and wages consistent with a reduction in firms’ labor market power around areas that were connected to the subway network after the expansion. We then lay out a quantitative spatial equilibrium model where firms behave as oligopsonies in the labor market to calculate the welfare gains from the transit infrastructure expansion. We find that workers benefit as firm owners see reduced profits and that accounting for labor market power responses amplifies the welfare gains.
Listed in SocArXiv
We analyze the effect of adverse health shocks on different expenditure shares. We find that households engage in substitution between health expenditures and food expenditures. We also find important heterogeneity in this trade-off between present health and future health mediated by access to social protection, job contract type, and location (urban-rural).
Download --- Download from SocArXiv
We analyze accessibility to jobs through different transportation modes and the extent of job spatial mismatch at the intra-urban level in a developing country city. We use data from Medellín, Colombia, from 2012 to 2017, to measure accessibility using employment weighted by travel times. We find that despite the continuous investment in public transportation and transport infrastructure, spatial mismatch in Medellín has increased.
Listed in Banco de Mexico working papers
We analyze the efficacy of hiring tax credits, particularly in distressed labor markets. Our estimates show positive effects on employment and sizable reductions on the unemployment rate.
Download --- Download from Banco de Mexico working papers
Listed in World Bank Policy Research Working Paper Series
Coverage: Vox Lacea
Multidimensional measures of poverty have become standard as complementary indicators of poverty in many countries. This paper proposes an application of existing methodologies that decompose welfare aggregates -based on counterfactual simulations- to break up the changes of the multidimensional poverty headcount into the variation attributed to each of its dimensions.
Download --- Download from World Bank Policy Research Working Paper Series
Work in Progress
This paper estimates the effect of a change in the minimum wage on the gender wage gap in Mexico. We exploit an increase in the minimum wage on the northern Mexican border of 100% in January 2019. We use a triple difference model to compare the wages of men and women, on the northern border and the rest of the country, before and after the policy change. We find that women’s daily wages increased between 0.9 and 1.7 log points more than men’s in the northern border because of the minimum wage increase, without overall differences in the evolution of formal sector employment across genders. These effects imply a 7 to 13% reduction in the gender wage gap. Most of the effect on wages appears in sectors with higher gender wage gaps and low-wage workers.
Download coming soon
We study how the COVID-19 pandemic changed the valuation of amenities in the prices of Airbnb listings in Mexico, a country with few tourism and mobility restrictions. Using the universe of Airbnb listings in Mexico from 2018 to 2022, we estimate hedonic price models and analyze how hedonic coefficients changed for amenities associated with lower COVID-19 infection risk and reduced face-to-face contact. Our results show that the valuation of remote-work amenities –such as workspaces–, open-space amenities –such as beach fronts–, and reduced-contact amenities –such as private spaces– significantly increased during the pandemic.
Download coming soon