nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2017‒12‒11
nine papers chosen by
Héctor Pifarré i Arolas
Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung

  1. Does Parents’ Access to Family Planning Increase Children’s Opportunities? Evidence from the War on Poverty and the Early Years of Title X By Martha J. Bailey; Olga Malkova; Zoë M. McLaren
  2. Parental Investments in Early Life and Child Outcomes: Evidence from Swedish Parental Leave Rules By Rita Ginja; Jenny Jans; Arizo Karimi
  3. Mom and Dad We’re Broke, Can You Help? A Comparative Study of Financial Transfers Within Families Before and After the Great Recession By Mary K. Hamman; Daniela Hochfellner; Pia Homrighausen
  4. Cognitive ability and fertility amongst Swedish men. Evidence from 18 cohorts of military conscription By Martin Kolk; Kieron J. Barclay
  5. Estimating male fertility from vital registration data with missing values By Christian Dudel; Sebastian Klüsener
  6. Condorcet was Wrong, Pareto was Right: Families, Inheritance and Inequality By Frank Cowell; Dirk Van de gaer
  7. Disease and Fertility: Evidence from the 1918 Influenza Pandemic in Sweden By Boberg-Fazlic, Nina; Ivets, Maryna; Karlsson, Martin; Nilsson, Therese
  8. Emigration during the French Revolution: Consequences in the Short and Longue Durée By Franck, Raphael; Michalopoulos, Stelios
  9. Childhood Circumstances and Adult Outcomes: Act II By Douglas Almond; Janet Currie; Valentina Duque

  1. By: Martha J. Bailey; Olga Malkova; Zoë M. McLaren
    Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between parents’ access to family planning and the economic resources of their children. Using the county-level introduction of U.S. family planning programs between 1964 and 1973, we find that children born after programs began had 2.8% higher household incomes. They were also 7% less likely to live in poverty and 12% less likely to live in households receiving public assistance. After accounting for selection, the direct effects of family planning programs on parents’ incomes account for roughly two thirds of these gains.
    JEL: I3 J13 J18
    Date: 2017–10
  2. By: Rita Ginja (Uppsala Universitet); Jenny Jans (Uppsala University); Arizo Karimi (Uppsala University)
    Abstract: We study how parental resources early in life affect children’s health and education exploiting the so-called speed premium (SP) in the Swedish parental leave system. The SP grants mothers higher parental leave benefits for the subsequent child without re-establishing eligibility through pre-birth market work if the two births occur within a pre-specified interval. This allow us to use a Regression Discontinuity framework. We find that the SP improves the educational outcomes of the first-born child, but not of the second-born. Impacts are driven by a combination of a positive income shock, and substitution from informal care to maternal time.
    Keywords: parental leave, Earnings, time investments, child outcomes
    JEL: J13 J22 J18
    Date: 2017–11
  3. By: Mary K. Hamman; Daniela Hochfellner; Pia Homrighausen
    Abstract: This paper examines financial transfers within families before and after the great recession. Transfers within families have historically been an important source of wealth accumulation for younger generations, but what happens to these transfers when incomes and wealth are distorted by a recession? We document patterns of financial transfers within families in the U.S. and Germany before and after the Great Recession. This paper uses data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) and the Survey of Health, Aging and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). Critical components of the analysis include the estimation of a difference-and-differents model to compare transfer behavior over time, and multiple triple-difference-and-difference models to further study how transfer behavior differs for different population groups. Key limitations are related to available data. The SHARE data used does not contain information for year 2007, which thus had to be excluded from the analysis. In addition, harmonizing the both datasets might introduce some potential of errors.
    Date: 2017–11
  4. By: Martin Kolk; Kieron J. Barclay (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany)
    Abstract: We examine the relationship between cognitive ability and childbearing patterns in contemporary Sweden using administrative register data. The topic has a long history in the social sciences and has been the topic of a large number of studies, many arguing for a negative gradient between intelligence and fertility. We link fertility histories to military conscription tests with intelligences scores for all Swedish born men born 1951 to 1967. We find an overall positive relationship between intelligence scores and fertility and that is consistent across our cohorts. The relationship is most pronounced for transition to a first child, and that men with the lowest categories of IQ-scores have the fewest children. Using fixed effects models we additionally control for all factors that are shared across siblings, and after such adjustments we find a stronger positive relationship between IQ and fertility. Furthermore, we find a positive gradient within groups of different lengths of education. Compositional differences of this kind are therefore not responsible for the positive gradient we observe - instead the relationship is even stronger after controlling for both educational careers and parental background factors. In our models where we compare brothers to one another we find that relative to men with IQ 100, the group with the lowest category of cognitive ability have 0.58 fewer children, and men with the highest category have 0.14 more children.
    Keywords: Sweden, fertility, intelligence, men, military service
    JEL: J1 Z0
    Date: 2017
  5. By: Christian Dudel (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); Sebastian Klüsener (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany)
    Abstract: Comparative perspectives on male fertility are still rare, in part because vital registration data often do not include paternal age information for a substantial number of births. We compare two imputation approaches that attempt to estimate male age-specific fertility rates and related measures for data in which the paternal age information is missing for a non-negligible number of cases. Taking births with paternal age information as a reference, the first approach uses the unconditional paternal age distribution, while the second approach considers the paternal age distribution conditional on the maternal age. To assess the performance of these two methods, we conduct simulations that mimic vital registration data for Sweden, the U.S., Spain, and Estonia. In these simulations, we vary the overall proportion and the age selectivity of missing values. We find that the conditional approach outperforms the unconditional approach in the majority of simulations, and should therefore generally be preferred.
    JEL: J1 Z0
    Date: 2017–11
  6. By: Frank Cowell; Dirk Van de gaer
    Abstract: Using a simple model of family decision making we examine the processes by which the wealth distribution changes over the generations, focusing in particular on the division of fortunes through inheritance and the union of fortunes through marriage. We show that the equilibrium wealth distribution can be characterized in a simple way for a variety of inheritance rules and marriage patterns. The shape of the distribution is principally determined by the size distribution of families. We show how changes in fertility, inheritance rules and inheritance taxation a ect long-run inequality.
    Keywords: wealth distribution, inheritance, inheritance taxation
    JEL: D31 D63
    Date: 2017–12
  7. By: Boberg-Fazlic, Nina (University of Southern Denmark); Ivets, Maryna (University of Duisburg-Essen); Karlsson, Martin (University of Duisburg-Essen); Nilsson, Therese (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN))
    Abstract: This paper studies the effect of the 1918–19 influenza pandemic on fertility using a historical dataset from Sweden. Our results suggest an immediate reduction in fertility driven by morbidity, and additional behavioral effects driven by mortality. We find some evidence of community rebuilding and replacement fertility, but the net long-term effect is fertility reduction. In districts highly affected by the flu there is also an improvement in parental quality: we observe a relative increase in births to married women and better-off city dwellers. Our findings help understand the link between mortality and fertility, one of the central relations in demography, and show that several factors – including disruptions to marriage and labor markets – contribute to fertility reduction in the long term. Our results are consistent with studies that find a positive fertility response following natural disasters, but with high-quality historical data we show that this effect is short-lived.
    Keywords: 1918–19 influenza pandemic; Influenza and pneumonia mortality; Fertility; Difference-in-Differences
    JEL: I12 J11 J13
    Date: 2017–08–31
  8. By: Franck, Raphael (Hebrew University of Jerusalem); Michalopoulos, Stelios (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis)
    Abstract: During the French Revolution, more than 100,000 individuals, predominantly supporters of the Old Regime, fled France. As a result, some areas experienced a significant change in the composition of the local elites whereas in others the pre-revolutionary social structure remained virtually intact. In this study, we trace the consequences of the émigrés flight on economic performance at the local level. We instrument emigration intensity with local temperature shocks during an inflection point of the Revolution, the summer of 1792, marked by the abolition of the constitutional monarchy and bouts of local violence. Our findings suggest that émigrés have a non monotonic effect on comparative development. During the 19th century, there is a significant negative impact on income per capita, which becomes positive from the second half of the 20th century onward. This pattern can be partially attributed to the reduction in the share of the landed elites in high-emigration regions. We show that the resulting fragmentation of agricultural holdings reduced labor productivity, depressing overall income levels in the short run; however, it facilitated the rise in human capital investments, eventually leading to a reversal in the pattern of regional comparative development.
    Keywords: Revolution; Elites; Climate shocks; France; Development
    JEL: N23 N24
    Date: 2017–09–26
  9. By: Douglas Almond (Columbia University); Janet Currie (Princeton University); Valentina Duque (University of Michigan)
    Abstract: That prenatal events can have life-long consequences is now well established. Nevertheless, research on the Fetal Origins Hypothesis is flourishing and has expanded to include the early childhood (postnatal) environment. Why does this literature have a “second act?” We summarize the major themes and contributions driving the empirical literature since our 2011 reviews, and try to interpret the literature in light of an overarching conceptual framework about how human capital is produced early in life. One major finding is that relatively mild shocks in early life can have substantial negative impacts, but that the effects are often heterogeneous reflecting differences in child endowments, budget constraints, and production technologies. Moreover, shocks, investments, and interventions can interact in complex ways that are only beginning to be understood. Many advances in our knowledge are due to increasing accessibility of comprehensive administrative data that allow events in early life to be linked to long-term outcomes. Yet, we still know relatively little about the interval between, and thus about whether it would be feasible to identify and intervene with affected individuals at some point between early life and adulthood. We do know enough, however, to be able to identify some interventions that hold promise for improving child outcomes in early life and throughout the life course.
    Keywords: fetal origins, infant mortality, prenatal environment, low birth weight
    JEL: H40 I14
    Date: 2017–11

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