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KeywordsWe thank Roc Armenter for excellent research assistantship
Chiara Corti andAdam Cartabiano for
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AbstractSince Max Weber, there has been an active debate on the impact of religion on people’s economic attitudes. Much of the existing evidence, however, is based on cross-country studies in which this impact is confounded by differences in other institutional factors. We use the WorldValues Surveys to identify the relationship between intensity of religious beliefs and economic attitudes, controlling for country-fixed effects. We study several economic attitudes towardcooperation, the government, working women, legal rules, thriftiness, andthe market economy. We also distinguish across religious denominations, differentiating on whether a religion is dominant in a country. We find that on average, religious beliefs are associated with ‘‘good’ ’ economic attitudes, where ‘‘good’ ’ is defined as conducive to higher per capita income andgrowth. Yet religious people tendto be more racist andless favorable with respect to working women. These effects differ across religious denominations. Overall, we find that Christian religions are more positively associatedwith attitudes conducive to economic growth.