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Abstract

Bullocks are an important resource in Indian agriculture where they are used as draft animals. Previous research suggests that farmers who do not own bullocks, or own bullocks in insufficient numbers relative to their land holdings, adjust bullock‐land ratios through transactions in the land market, rather than by hiring bullock services. The reasons given for this behaviour are that there are ‘inhibited’ or ‘missing’ village markets for bullock services. Results from a survey of the activities and transactions of six bullock contractors during an entire cropping period show that village markets for bullock services exist continuously and are far from being inhibited. Close monitoring of the bullock contractors’ transactions supplied rich evidence of the manifold contractual arrangements used in this village market for bullock services.

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