ESRI Discussion Paper Series No.321
New Evidence on Intra-Household Allocation of Resources in Japanese Households

Masahiro Hori
Senior Research Fellow, Economic and Social Research Institute, Cabinet Office
Nahoko Mitsuyama
Project Researcher, Graduate School of Economics, University of Tokyo
Satoshi Shimizutani
Visiting Senior Research Fellow, Institute for International Policy Studies


This paper examines intra-household allocation of resources to gain insight into family relationships and gender bias in Japanese household expenditures. We take the Engel curve approach to examine how adult consumption is affected by the presence of a child, either a boy or a girl, in the family. Empowered by diary-based high quality spending data from the Family Income and Expenditure Survey, our empirical results show that adult consumption is significantly reduced in households with children; further, there is no evidence of gender discrimination between boys and girls in terms of the outlay equivalent ratios representing a reduction of the total amount of expenditure for adult goods, while responses of adult clothing expenses to the presence of a child are different between the case of a boy and that of a girl: spending on a father’s clothing is reduced when the child is a school-age daughter, while spending on a mother’s clothing decreases when a school-age son is in the home. Our analysis also shows that girls receive a larger share of spending for children’s clothing as well as for high school education than boys in recent years.

  • Key words: Intra-household resource allocation, Family relationships, Gender bias, Japan.
  • JEL Classification Codes: J16; D12; D13.

Structure of the whole text(PDF-Format 1 File)

  1. Full Text別ウィンドウで開きます。(PDF-Format 277 KB)
  2. page1
  3. page2
    1. Introduction
  4. page5
    2. Data description
  5. page8
    3. Engel curve approach
  6. page11
    4. Empirical results and discussions
    1. page11
      4.1 Results for adult goods
    2. page15
      4.2 Results for child goods
  7. page17
    5. Discussion
  8. page20
    6. Conclusion
  9. page22
  10. page26
    Table 1. Sample Statistics
  11. page27
    Table 2. Estimated π-ratios for (possible) Adult Goods
  12. page28
    Table 3. Differences in π-ratios by Gender ( π(Male)-π(Female) ) for Adult Goods
  13. page29
    Table 4. Outlay Equivlence Ratios (π-ratios) for Child Goods
  14. page30
    Table 5. Differences in π-ratios by Gender ( π(Male)-π(Female) ) for Child Goods
  15. page31
    Appendix A: Definition of Adult and Child Goods
  16. page32
    Appendix B. Sample Statistics for Households Surveyed from July to December.
  • 1-6-1 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8914, Japan.
    Tel: +81-3-5253-2111