The aim of this paper is to explore the motivation of monetary transfers received by household heads. Indeed, the financial transfers may be motivated by altruism or by the expectation of future services. For this reason, we select a sample of Italian families from the 2006 European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) dataset. The empirical analysis is divided into two parts. First, we consider the transfer decision and try to account for the factors that affect the probability that the household member will receive a transfer. Next, we restrict our analysis to those families who did receive a positive transfer and examine the factors that affect the size of the transfer. The economic interest in the intrinsic explanation of monetary transfers is supported by the efficacy of policy makers instruments. For this reason, we also explore the relationship between private and public financial transfers. The main contribution to the existing literature is to investigate the social motivation of private transfers and their implications in terms of policy in a unified framework.
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