Effect of Income on Trust: Evidence from the 2009 Economic Crisis in Russia
GB : Wiley
1082 - 1118 p.
Social Capital, Trust, Business Cycle
This article draws on a natural experiment to identify the relationship between income and trust. We use a unique panel data set on Russia where GDP experienced an 8% drop in 2009. The effect of the crisis had been uneven among Russian regions because of their differences in industrial structure inherited from the Soviet period. After instrumenting average regional income by Soviet industrial structure, we find that 10% decrease in income is associated with a five percentage point decrease in social trust. We also find that post-crisis economic recovery did not fully restore pre-crisis trust level.