The Role of Middle Class in Economic Development: What Do Cross-Country Data Show?
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This paper investigates the channels through which the middle class may matter for consumption growth. Using several different middle-class measures and a panel of 105 developing countries spanning the period 1985–2013, we find that a larger middle class influences consumption growth primarily through higher levels of human capital accumulation. There is also a significant direct effect of middle-class size on consumption growth, which is more pronounced in the latter half of the sample, the 2000–2013 period.
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