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The impact of social cash transfer to the Brazilian elderly on their household composition

Maira A Paulo, Centro de Desenvolvimento e Planejamento Regional (CEDEPLAR)
Simone Wajnman, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais

This paper analyzes the impact of receiving a social cash transfer - the Continuous Cash Benefit Program (BPC) - on the elderly household composition in Brazil. BPC is an unconditional monthly social benefit destined to poor individuals above 65 years old. Through the statistical method of "Difference in Difference" and Brazilian data (PNAD) based on a sample of households for 2002 and 2004, two alternative hypotheses are investigated: either the acceptance of such a transfer would give more autonomy to the elderly, enabling them to live alone, or, due to the poverty status affecting their families, it would result in a stronger attraction for relatives to live around those elders, increasing the probability of co-habitation in the same household. The result suggests that, for the Brazilian case, accepting the transfer increases the probability of living alone for the elderly poor.

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Presented in Poster Session 4: Poster Session 4: health and ageing