nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2017‒10‒22
seven papers chosen by
Héctor Pifarré i Arolas
Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung

  1. The Children of the Missed Pill By Tomás Rau; Miguel Sarzosa; Sergio S. Urzúa
  2. Parental Leave, (In)formal Childcare and Long-term Child Outcomes By Natalia Danzer; Martin Halla; Nicole Schneeweis; Martina Zweimüller
  3. The Effects of the Timing of Childbirth on Female Labour Supply: An Analysis using the Sequential Matching Approach By OKAMURA Kazuaki; ISLAM Nizamul
  4. The recent rise of labor force participation of older workers in Sweden By Laun, Lisa; Palme, Mårten
  5. Wage flexibility of older workers and the role of institutions - evidence from the German LIAB data set By Kerndler, Martin
  6. Automation and demographic change By Abeliansky, Ana Lucia; Prettner, Klaus
  7. Global demographic change and climate policies By Gerlagh, Reyer; Jaimes Bonilla, Richard; Motavasseli, Ali

  1. By: Tomás Rau; Miguel Sarzosa; Sergio S. Urzúa
    Abstract: We use sharp, massive and unexpected price increases of oral contraceptives—product of a documented case of collusion among pharmaceutical retailers in Chile—as a natural experiment to estimate the impact of access to the Pill on fertility and newborn health. Our empirical strategy combines multiple sources of information and takes into account the seasonality of conceptions and the general trends of fertility, as well as the dynamics that arise after interrupting Pill's intake. Our estimates suggest that due to the price hike, the weekly birth rate increased by 4%. We show large effects on the number of children born to unmarried mothers, from mothers in their early 20's, and to primiparae women. Moreover, we find evidence of significant deterioration of newborn health as measured by the incidence of low birthweight and infant mortality. We suggest that the “extra” conceptions faced dire conditions during gestation as a result of mothers' unhealthy behaviors. In addition, we document a disproportional increase of 27% in the weekly miscarriage and stillbirth rates, which we interpret as manifestations of active efforts of termination in a country where abortion was illegal. As the “extra” children reached school age, we find lower school enrollment rates and higher participation in programs for students with special needs. Our results suggest that access to contraceptives may prevent conceptions that will turn out to be in relatively poor health, and thereby may improve the average health of children conceived.
    JEL: I14 I15 K42 L13 L4 L41
    Date: 2017–10
  2. By: Natalia Danzer; Martin Halla; Nicole Schneeweis; Martina Zweimüller
    Abstract: We provide a novel interpretation of the estimated treatment effects from evaluations of parental leave reforms. Accounting for the counterfactual mode of care is crucial in the analysis of child outcomes and potential mediators. We evaluate a large and generous parental leave extension in Austria exploiting a sharp birthday cutoff-based discontinuity in the eligibility for extended parental leave and geographical variation in formal childcare. We find that estimated treatment effects on long-term child outcomes differ substantially according to the availability of formal childcare and the mother’s counterfactual work behavior. We show that extending parental leave has significant positive effects on children’s health and human capital outcomes only if the reform induces a replacement of informal childcare with maternal care. We conclude that care provided by mothers (or formal institutions) is superior to informal care arrangements.
    Keywords: parental leave, formal childcare, informal childcare, child development, maternal labor supply, fertility
    JEL: J13 H52 J22 J12 I38
    Date: 2017
  3. By: OKAMURA Kazuaki; ISLAM Nizamul
    Abstract: In this study, we estimate the effects of childbirth on female labour supply by using Japanese data. The novel contributions of our study are twofold. Firstly, we include the effects of unobserved preferences on female labour supply. Secondly, we apply a dynamic version of the sequential matching approach to analyse the causal effects of childbirth on female labour market outcomes. The estimated results show that childbirth decreases current employment outcomes (participation in regular and non-regular work) and that this decrease is larger for regular employees than for non-regular employees. On the timing of childbirth, while the negative effects of childbirth on regular work increase by delaying the age at childbirth, these negative effects on non-regular employment slightly decrease by delaying the age at childbirth. On future employment outcomes, childbirth does not affect the probability of choosing non-regular work in the next period regardless of childbearing age. By contrast, delayed childbirth decreases the probability of choosing regular work in the next period significantly.
    Keywords: Dynamic Treatment Approach; Sequential Matching Method
    JEL: C21 C25 J21
    Date: 2017–10
  4. By: Laun, Lisa (IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy); Palme, Mårten (Department of economics, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: This paper studies the background to the increase in labor force participation of older workers in Sweden since 2000. In the first part, we study how the characteristics of the elderly have changed with respect to health, education level and work environment, as well as the impact of joint decision-making within the household. In the second part, we study the importance of institutional changes, including a major reform of the old-age pension system, introduction of tax credits for older workers, changes of the mandatory retirement age and stricter eligibility criteria in the disability insurance program. We find that the rise in labor force participation has coincided with improvements in health and educational attainment across birth cohorts as well as increased screening stringency in the disability insurance program.
    Keywords: retirement; NDC pension plans; disability insurance
    JEL: I10 J26
    Date: 2017–09–19
  5. By: Kerndler, Martin
    Abstract: High and rigid wages are a threat for employment, especially for older workers. While wage levels of job stayers in many countries are not decreasing in late working life, little is known about the evolution of wage flexibility over the lifecycle. Using the German LIAB data set, this paper investigates the age pattern of wage flexibility with respect to permanent and transitory shocks to firm productivity. Works councils are found to have an important effect on wage flexibility of older workers.
    JEL: J14 J31 J41 J51
    Date: 2017
  6. By: Abeliansky, Ana Lucia; Prettner, Klaus
    Abstract: A standard theoretical framework of accumulation of traditional physical capital and automation capital predicts that countries with a lower population growth rate are the ones innovating/adopting new automation technologies faster. We test the model prediction using panel data for 60 countries from 1993 to 2013. Empirical estimates suggest that a 1% increase in population growth is associated with an approximate 2% reduction in the growth rate of robot density.
    JEL: J11 O14 O33 O40
    Date: 2017
  7. By: Gerlagh, Reyer (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research); Jaimes Bonilla, Richard (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research); Motavasseli, Ali (Tilburg University, Center For Economic Research)
    Abstract: Between 1950 and 2017, world average life expectancy increased from below-50 to above-70, while the fertility rate dropped from 5 to about 2.5. We develop and calibrate an analytic climate-economy model with overlapping generations to study the effect of such demographic change on capital markets and optimal climate policies. Our model replicates findings from the OLG-demography literature, such as a rise in households’ savings, and a declining rate of return to capital. We also find that demographic change raises the social cost of carbon, at 2020, from 28 euro/tCO2 in a model that abstracts from demography, to 94 euro/tCO2 in our calibrated model.
    Keywords: climate change; social cost of carbon; environmental policy; demographic trends
    JEL: H23 J11 Q54 Q58
    Date: 2017

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