The COVID-19 crisis has a severe impact on education and employment and exposed the many social inequities that make some populations more vulnerable to shocks. Despite a vast literature on social mobility in advanced economies, little is known about it in African countries, mainly due to data limitations. Using a large harmonized dataset of more than 72 million individuals, we fill this gap and examine socioeconomic status mobility across generations, measured by educational and occupational attainment. We uncover the substantial geographical variations in the degree of upward/downward educational and occupational mobility across and within African countries, and the gender and rural/urban divide. Additionally, we explore the determinants of social mobility in the African region. We find that social mobility on the continent could be partly explained by observable individual characteristics (gender, marital status, age, etc.), and that educational mobility is a driver of occupational mobility. Lastly, we show that the quality of institutions, the level of public spending on education, social protection coverage, natural resource endowments, and countries' fragility are strong predictors of social mobility in Africa.
The Financial Action Task Force’s gray list publicly identiﬁes countries with strategic deﬁciencies in their AML/CFT regimes (i.e., in their policies to prevent money laundering and the ﬁnancing of terrorism). How much gray-listing aﬀects a country’s capital ﬂows is of interest to policy makers, investors, and the Fund. This paper estimates the magnitude of the eﬀect using an inferential machine learning technique. It ﬁnds that gray-listing results in a large and statistically signiﬁcant reduction in capital inﬂows.
Mr. Philip Barrett, Mariia Bondar, Sophia Chen, Miss Mali Chivakul, and Ms. Deniz O Igan
Using a new daily index of social unrest, we provide systematic evidence on the negative impact of social unrest on stock market performance. An average social unrest episode in an typical country causes a 1.4 percentage point drop in cumulative abnormal returns over a two-week event window. This drop is more pronounced for events that last longer and for events that happen in emerging markets. Stronger institutions, particularly better governance and more democratic systems, mitigate the adverse impact of social unrest on stock market returns.