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The loss to the English economy caused by decreased migration resulting from relief payments to agricultural laborers is estimated. I conclude that, at worst, the Poor Law had a small negative impact on national product. If poor relief and wages were substitutes, the Poor Law may have had a positive impact on capital formation and economic growth.


Suggested Citation

Boyer, G. R. (1986). The poor law, migration, and economic growth [Electronic version]. Journal of Economic History 46(2), 419-430.

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