We study the wealth accumulation of Indian parliamentarians using public disclosures required of all candidates since 2003. Annual asset growth of winners is on average 3 to 6 percentage points higher than runners-up. By performing a within-constituency comparison where both runner-up and winner run in consecutive elections, and by looking at the subsample of very close elections, we rule out a range of alternative explanations for differential earnings of politicians and a relevant control group. The ``winner's premium" comes from parliamentarians holding positions in the Council of Ministers, with asset returns 13 to 29 percentage points higher than non-winners. The benefit of winning is also concentrated among incumbents, because of low asset growth for incumbent non-winners.This is the type of study you would like to see repeated for many other countries. Just how big is the premium for New Zealand?
Monday, 21 May 2012
Private returns to public office
A new interesting NBER working paper on Private Returns to Public Office by Raymond Fisman, Florian Schulz and Vikrant Vig is available. The abstract reads: