Henry Tam

Department of Economics

Associate Professor

Office: Vari Hall, 1042
Phone: 416-736-2100 Ext: 30112
Emailthenry@yorku.ca

I am an Associate Professor of Economics at York University. My general research interests lie in the areas of macroeconomics, development economics, political economy and financial economics. I obtained my PhD from Harvard University.

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Degrees

PhD Economics, Harvard University
BA Economics-Political Science and Physics, Columbia University


Research Interests

Economics , Technological Change and Development, Financial Economics, Corporate Governance

Selected Publications

Tam, H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms” Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting , forthcoming (2015) (with L. Lai)

Tam H. "U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” Economic Letters , 110:2 (2011), pp. 140-142

Tam, H. "Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong with C-CAPM: The Use of Emigration Growth as an Instrument” Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, 19: 3 (2009), p. 520-533 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “An Economic or Political Kuznets Curve?” Public Choice, 134: 3-4 (2008), pp. 367-389.

Tam, H. “The Humean Critique of Lump Sum Taxation,” Public Choice 118: 1-2 (2004), pp. 61-76.

Tam, H. “A Social Contract Approach to the Formation of National Borders,” Public Choice 118: 1-2 (2004), pp. 183-209.

All Publications

Journal Articles

Tam, H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms” Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting , forthcoming (2015) (with L. Lai)

Tam H. "U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” Economic Letters , 110:2 (2011), pp. 140-142

Tam, H. "Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong with C-CAPM: The Use of Emigration Growth as an Instrument” Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, 19: 3 (2009), p. 520-533 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “Low Elasticity of Intertemporal Substitution: Evidence from Mexico,” Journal of the American Academy of Business, 13: 1 (2008), pp. 264-271 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “An Economic or Political Kuznets Curve?” Public Choice, 134: 3-4 (2008), pp. 367-389.

Tam H. "Independent Directors and the Propensity to Smooth Income: A Study of Corporate Governance in China,” The Business Review , Cambridge, 7: 1 (2007), pp. 328-335 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “The Humean Critique of Lump Sum Taxation,” Public Choice 118: 1-2 (2004), pp. 61-76.

Tam, H. “A Social Contract Approach to the Formation of National Borders,” Public Choice 118: 1-2 (2004), pp. 183-209.

Conference Proceedings

Tam H. “U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” in Economic Essays (conference proceedings of the ATINER conferences in economics of 2010 and 2011), ed. Gregory T. Papanikos (2012), pp. 11-20.

Conference Papers

Tam H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms,” presented at the 11th Annual International Conference on Business, Athens, Greece (July 2013) (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” presented at the Allied Academies Fall 2010 International Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA (October 2010).

Tam, H. "Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds and the Role of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the Knowledge Globalization Conference, Boston, Massachusetts, USA (November 2010) (with L. Lai).

Tam H. “Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds and the Role of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the International Business and Economics Research (Business) Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA (October 2010) (with L. Lai).

Tam H. “U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” presented at the 5th Annual International Symposium on Economic Theory, Policy and Applications, Athens, Greece (July 2010).

Tam, H. “Independent Directors and the Propensity to Smooth Income: A Study of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the International Business & Economics Research (IBER) Conference, Los Angeles, California, USA (June 2007) (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “Gender Role in Production, Demographic Transition, and Economic Take-off” presented at the Canadian Economic Association (CEA) Meetings, Halifax, Nova Scotia (June 2007).

Tam H. “Low Elasticity of Intertemporal Substitution: Evidence from Mexico” presented at the Economics & International Business Research (EIBR) Conference, Miami, Florida, USA (December 2007).

Tam H. "Independent Directors and the Propensity to Smooth Income: A Study of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the American Accounting Association (AAA) Mid-Atlantic Region Annual Meeting, Parsippany, New Jersey, USA (May 2007) (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “Skill-based Technology, Fertility Choice, and Gender Inequality” presented at the Econometric Society World Congress (ESWC), London, UK (August 2005).

Tam H. “Skill-biased Technology, Fertility Choice, and Gender Inequality” presented at the European Society of Population Economics (ESPE) Conference, Paris, France (June 2005).

Tam H. “Skill-biased Technology, Fertility Choice, and Gender Inequality” presented at the Canadian Economic Association (CEA) Meetings, Hamilton, Ontario (May 2005).

Tam, H. “The Gender Role in Production, Endogenous Fertility, and the Switch from Physical to Human Capital” presented at Canadian Economic Theory Conference (CETC), Montreal, Quebec (May 2004).

Tam H. “Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong using Intertemporal Consumption-Based CAPM by Exploiting Emigration Data” presented at the Lonestar Conference, Austin, Texas, USA (May 2001).

Tam, H. “The Economics of National Borders” presented at the Lonestar Conference, College Station, Texas, USA (May 2000).

Forthcoming

Tam H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms” Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting , forthcoming (2015) (with L. Lai).

Other

U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence
Economic Letters , 110(2), 2011, pp. 140-142
Abstract: Using a panel data of about 130 countries from 1950 to 1980, we use dynamic panel data estimation to demonstrate that the U-shaped relationship between feminization of the labor force and real GDP per capita holds up as an intertemporal relationship.
[go to paper]

Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong with C-CAPM: The Use of Emigration Growth as an Instrument
(with L. Lai)
Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money , 19(3), 2009, pp. 520-533
Abstract: We test the C-CAPM with CRRA utility using Hong Kong data. In 2SLS regressions, we obtain rather high estimates of the coefficient of relative risk aversion, which could explain the high equity premium in Hong Kong. Because we use lagged emigration growth as an instrument in the first-stage regression, which has significant negative impact on future stock market return in Hong Kong, the first-stage R2 and F-statistics are rather high and the weak instrument critique of the validity of 2SLS regressions is potentially resolved. Weak-instrument-robust tests also confirm that the degree of risk aversion is indeed high for Hong Kong.
[go to paper]

An Economic or Political Kuznets Curve?
Public Choice , 134(3-4), 2008, pp. 367-389
Abstract: This paper examines two closely related empirical hypotheses: an economic Kuznets curve and a political Kuznets curve. We find a robust inverted-U relationship between income inequality and political development, but not one between income inequality and economic development. Exploring the cross-section aspect of the panel data, we find that the economic Kuznets curve is sensitive to different control specifications and to different functional specifications, but the political Kuznets curve is robust. Using dynamic panel data estimation, we find that the economic Kuznets curve does not hold up intertemporally while the political Kuznets curve does.
[go to paper]

The Humean Critique of Lump Sum Taxation
Public Choice , 118(1-2), 2004, pp. 61-76
Abstract: This paper revives Hume's idea that it is unlikely forsovereign governments to implement pure lump-sum taxationbecause lump-sum taxes are arbitrary. We phrase the problem asone of time-inconsistency of tax collection for a tax revenuemaximizing Leviathan government. We demonstrate that whilelump-sum taxation is more efficient than distortionary incometax in terms of the ex anteamount of tax revenueraised, honoring a lump-sum tax is less likely to be crediblethan honoring a distortionary income tax. We also extend theframework to understanding the relationship betweenexpropriation risk and the lack of foreign direct investment.
[go to paper]

A Social Contract Approach to the Formation of National Borders
Public Choice , 118(1-2), 2004, pp. 183-209
Abstract: This paper explores an economic model that elucidates theformation of national borders and explains the cross-sectionalvariance in the size of nations around the world. According tothe present social contract approach, risk averse agents tryto get out of the ``state of nature'' and get together to formsocieties to reduce consumption uncertainty, but heterogeneityaverse agents will not allow nations to become too large. Themodel relates the geometry of a nation with the geography ofits border and predicts the empirical observation thatcountries with ``coastline'' borders are larger than``landlocked'' countries.
[go to paper]

Current Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Summer 2017 AP/ECON2400 3.0  Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory I LECT  
Summer 2017 AP/ECON2400 3.0  Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory I LECT  


I am an Associate Professor of Economics at York University. My general research interests lie in the areas of macroeconomics, development economics, political economy and financial economics. I obtained my PhD from Harvard University.

Degrees

PhD Economics, Harvard University
BA Economics-Political Science and Physics, Columbia University

Research Interests:

Economics , Technological Change and Development, Financial Economics, Corporate Governance

All Publications

Journal Articles

Tam, H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms” Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting , forthcoming (2015) (with L. Lai)

Tam H. "U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” Economic Letters , 110:2 (2011), pp. 140-142

Tam, H. "Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong with C-CAPM: The Use of Emigration Growth as an Instrument” Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, 19: 3 (2009), p. 520-533 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “Low Elasticity of Intertemporal Substitution: Evidence from Mexico,” Journal of the American Academy of Business, 13: 1 (2008), pp. 264-271 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “An Economic or Political Kuznets Curve?” Public Choice, 134: 3-4 (2008), pp. 367-389.

Tam H. "Independent Directors and the Propensity to Smooth Income: A Study of Corporate Governance in China,” The Business Review , Cambridge, 7: 1 (2007), pp. 328-335 (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “The Humean Critique of Lump Sum Taxation,” Public Choice 118: 1-2 (2004), pp. 61-76.

Tam, H. “A Social Contract Approach to the Formation of National Borders,” Public Choice 118: 1-2 (2004), pp. 183-209.

Conference Proceedings

Tam H. “U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” in Economic Essays (conference proceedings of the ATINER conferences in economics of 2010 and 2011), ed. Gregory T. Papanikos (2012), pp. 11-20.

Conference Papers

Tam H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms,” presented at the 11th Annual International Conference on Business, Athens, Greece (July 2013) (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” presented at the Allied Academies Fall 2010 International Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA (October 2010).

Tam, H. "Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds and the Role of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the Knowledge Globalization Conference, Boston, Massachusetts, USA (November 2010) (with L. Lai).

Tam H. “Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds and the Role of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the International Business and Economics Research (Business) Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA (October 2010) (with L. Lai).

Tam H. “U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence” presented at the 5th Annual International Symposium on Economic Theory, Policy and Applications, Athens, Greece (July 2010).

Tam, H. “Independent Directors and the Propensity to Smooth Income: A Study of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the International Business & Economics Research (IBER) Conference, Los Angeles, California, USA (June 2007) (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “Gender Role in Production, Demographic Transition, and Economic Take-off” presented at the Canadian Economic Association (CEA) Meetings, Halifax, Nova Scotia (June 2007).

Tam H. “Low Elasticity of Intertemporal Substitution: Evidence from Mexico” presented at the Economics & International Business Research (EIBR) Conference, Miami, Florida, USA (December 2007).

Tam H. "Independent Directors and the Propensity to Smooth Income: A Study of Corporate Governance in China” presented at the American Accounting Association (AAA) Mid-Atlantic Region Annual Meeting, Parsippany, New Jersey, USA (May 2007) (with L. Lai).

Tam, H. “Skill-based Technology, Fertility Choice, and Gender Inequality” presented at the Econometric Society World Congress (ESWC), London, UK (August 2005).

Tam H. “Skill-biased Technology, Fertility Choice, and Gender Inequality” presented at the European Society of Population Economics (ESPE) Conference, Paris, France (June 2005).

Tam H. “Skill-biased Technology, Fertility Choice, and Gender Inequality” presented at the Canadian Economic Association (CEA) Meetings, Hamilton, Ontario (May 2005).

Tam, H. “The Gender Role in Production, Endogenous Fertility, and the Switch from Physical to Human Capital” presented at Canadian Economic Theory Conference (CETC), Montreal, Quebec (May 2004).

Tam H. “Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong using Intertemporal Consumption-Based CAPM by Exploiting Emigration Data” presented at the Lonestar Conference, Austin, Texas, USA (May 2001).

Tam, H. “The Economics of National Borders” presented at the Lonestar Conference, College Station, Texas, USA (May 2000).

Forthcoming

Tam H. “Corporate Governance, Ownership Structure and Managing Earnings to Meet Critical Thresholds among Chinese Listed Firms” Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting , forthcoming (2015) (with L. Lai).

Other

U-shaped Female Labor Participation with Economic Development: Some Panel Data Evidence
Economic Letters , 110(2), 2011, pp. 140-142
Abstract: Using a panel data of about 130 countries from 1950 to 1980, we use dynamic panel data estimation to demonstrate that the U-shaped relationship between feminization of the labor force and real GDP per capita holds up as an intertemporal relationship.
[go to paper]

Explaining the Equity Premium in Hong Kong with C-CAPM: The Use of Emigration Growth as an Instrument
(with L. Lai)
Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money , 19(3), 2009, pp. 520-533
Abstract: We test the C-CAPM with CRRA utility using Hong Kong data. In 2SLS regressions, we obtain rather high estimates of the coefficient of relative risk aversion, which could explain the high equity premium in Hong Kong. Because we use lagged emigration growth as an instrument in the first-stage regression, which has significant negative impact on future stock market return in Hong Kong, the first-stage R2 and F-statistics are rather high and the weak instrument critique of the validity of 2SLS regressions is potentially resolved. Weak-instrument-robust tests also confirm that the degree of risk aversion is indeed high for Hong Kong.
[go to paper]

An Economic or Political Kuznets Curve?
Public Choice , 134(3-4), 2008, pp. 367-389
Abstract: This paper examines two closely related empirical hypotheses: an economic Kuznets curve and a political Kuznets curve. We find a robust inverted-U relationship between income inequality and political development, but not one between income inequality and economic development. Exploring the cross-section aspect of the panel data, we find that the economic Kuznets curve is sensitive to different control specifications and to different functional specifications, but the political Kuznets curve is robust. Using dynamic panel data estimation, we find that the economic Kuznets curve does not hold up intertemporally while the political Kuznets curve does.
[go to paper]

The Humean Critique of Lump Sum Taxation
Public Choice , 118(1-2), 2004, pp. 61-76
Abstract: This paper revives Hume's idea that it is unlikely forsovereign governments to implement pure lump-sum taxationbecause lump-sum taxes are arbitrary. We phrase the problem asone of time-inconsistency of tax collection for a tax revenuemaximizing Leviathan government. We demonstrate that whilelump-sum taxation is more efficient than distortionary incometax in terms of the ex anteamount of tax revenueraised, honoring a lump-sum tax is less likely to be crediblethan honoring a distortionary income tax. We also extend theframework to understanding the relationship betweenexpropriation risk and the lack of foreign direct investment.
[go to paper]

A Social Contract Approach to the Formation of National Borders
Public Choice , 118(1-2), 2004, pp. 183-209
Abstract: This paper explores an economic model that elucidates theformation of national borders and explains the cross-sectionalvariance in the size of nations around the world. According tothe present social contract approach, risk averse agents tryto get out of the ``state of nature'' and get together to formsocieties to reduce consumption uncertainty, but heterogeneityaverse agents will not allow nations to become too large. Themodel relates the geometry of a nation with the geography ofits border and predicts the empirical observation thatcountries with ``coastline'' borders are larger than``landlocked'' countries.
[go to paper]


Teaching:

Current Courses

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TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Summer 2017 AP/ECON2400 3.0  Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory I LECT  
Summer 2017 AP/ECON2400 3.0  Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory I LECT