nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2019‒08‒26
eight papers chosen by
Héctor Pifarré i Arolas
Universitat Pompeu Fabra

  1. Globalization, Gender, and the Family By Wolfgang Keller; Hale Utar
  2. Are Marriage-Related Taxes and Social Security Benefits Holding Back Female Labor Supply? By Margherita Borella; Mariacristina De Nardi; Fang Yang
  3. Fertility effects of college education: Evidence from the German educational expansion By Kamhöfer, Daniel A.; Westphal, Matthias
  4. Long-run consequences of informal elderly care and implications of public long-term care insurance By Korfhage, Thorben
  5. The Impact of Full-Day Kindergarten on Maternal Labour Supply By Dhuey, Elizabeth; Lamontagne, Jessie; Zhang, Tingting
  6. The Gender Gap in Informal Child Care: Theory and Some Evidence from Italy By Francesca Barigozzi; Cremer,Helmuth; Chiara Monfardini
  7. The retirement mortality puzzle: Evidence from a regression discontinuity design By Giesecke, Matthias
  8. Can Economic Policies Reduce Deaths of Despair? Working Paper #104-19 By Dow, Wiiliam H; Godoey, Anna; Lowenstein, Christopher A; Reich, Michael

  1. By: Wolfgang Keller; Hale Utar
    Abstract: This paper shows that globalization has far-reaching implications for the economy’s fertility rate and family structure because it influences work-life balance. Employing population register data on all births, marriages, and divorces together with employer-employee linked data for Denmark, we show that lower labor market opportunities due to Chinese import competition lead to a shift towards family, with more parental leave and higher fertility as well as more marriages and fewer divorces. This shift is driven largely by women, not men. Correspondingly, the negative earnings implications of the rising import competition are concentrated on women, and gender earnings inequality increases. The paper establishes the market- versus family choice as a major determinant of trade adjustment costs. While older workers respond to the shock rather similarly whether female or male, for young workers the family response takes away the adjustment advantage they typically have–if the worker is a woman. The female biological clock–low fertility beyond the early forties–is central to this gender difference in adjustment, rather than the composition of jobs or workplaces, as well as other potential causes.
    Keywords: fertility, earnings inequality, marriage, divorce, import competition, gender gap
    JEL: F16 J12 J13 J16
    Date: 2019
  2. By: Margherita Borella; Mariacristina De Nardi; Fang Yang
    Abstract: In the U.S., both taxes and old age Social Security benefits depend on one's marital status and tend to discourage the labor supply of the secondary earner. To what extent are these provisions holding back female labor supply? We estimate a rich life-cycle model of labor supply and savings for couples and singles using the Method of Simulated Moments (MSM) on the 1945 and 1955 birth-year cohorts and we use it to evaluate what would happen without these provisions. Our model matches well the life cycle profiles of labor market participation, hours, and savings for married and single people and generates plausible elasticities of labor supply. Eliminating marriage-related provisions drastically increases the participation of married women over their entire life cycle, reduces the participation of married men after age 55, and increases the savings of couples in both cohorts, including the later one, which has similar participation to that of more recent generations. If the resulting government surplus were used to lower income taxation, there would be large welfare gains for the vast majority of the population.
    JEL: E21 H2 J22 J31
    Date: 2019–07
  3. By: Kamhöfer, Daniel A.; Westphal, Matthias
    Abstract: Using arguably exogenous variation in college expansions we estimate the effects of college education on female fertility. While college education reduces the probability of becoming a mother, college-educated mothers have more children than mothers without a college education. Lower child-income penalties of college-educated mothers of two relative to mothers without college up to nine years after birth suggest a stronger polarization of college graduate jobs into family-friendly and career-oriented as a potential explanation. We conclude that policies aiming at increasing female educational participation should be counteracted by policies enabling especially college graduates to have both a career and a family.
    Keywords: family planning,college education,augmented quantity-quality model
    JEL: C36 I21 J13
    Date: 2019
  4. By: Korfhage, Thorben
    Abstract: In this paper, I estimate a dynamic structural model of labor supply, retirement, and informal care supply, incorporating labor market frictions and the German tax and benefit system. I find that informal elderly care has adverse and persistent effects on labor market outcomes and therefore negatively affects lifetime earnings, future pension benefits, and individuals' well-being. These consequences of caregiving are heterogeneous and depend on age, previous earnings, and institutional regulations. Policy simulations suggest that, even though fiscally costly, public long-term care insurance can offset the personal costs of caregiving to a large extent - in particular for low-income individuals.
    Keywords: long-term care,informal care,long-term care insurance,labor supply,retirement,pension benefits,structural model
    JEL: I18 I38 J14 J22 J26
    Date: 2019
  5. By: Dhuey, Elizabeth (University of Toronto); Lamontagne, Jessie (Scotiabank); Zhang, Tingting (University of Toronto)
    Abstract: We examine the impact of offering full-day as a replacement for half-day kindergarten on mothers' labour supply using the rollout of full-day kindergarten in Ontario, Canada. We find no impact on the extensive margin but do find one on the intensive margin. In particular, we find that access to full-day kindergarten increases weekly hours worked and decreases absenteeism for mothers of four-year-olds. We find that this effect is driven by specific sub-groups, namely non-immigrant mothers of only one child with low education levels who live in urban areas.
    Keywords: kindergarten, early education, maternal labour supply
    JEL: I28
    Date: 2019–07
  6. By: Francesca Barigozzi; Cremer,Helmuth; Chiara Monfardini
    Abstract: Our model studies couples’ time allocation and career choices, which are affected by a social norm on gender roles in the family. Parents can provide two types of informal child care: basic care (feeding, changing children, baby-sitting) and quality care (activities that stimulate children’s social and cognitive skills). We obtain the following main results. Traditional mothers provide some informal basic care, whereas career mothers purchase full time formal basic care in the market. Informal basic care is too large and the group of career mothers is too small because of the social norm. Informal quality care is increasing in the couple’s income and is provided in larger amount by mothers. We test the model’s predictions for Italy using the most recent ISTAT “Use of Time” survey. In line with the model, mothers devote more time than fathers to both basic and quality informal care; more educated parents devote more time to quality informal care than less educated parents; more educated mothers spend more time in the labor market than less educated mothers.
    Keywords: social norms , gender gaps, women’s career choices, basic and quality child care
    JEL: D13 H23 J16 J22
    Date: 2019
  7. By: Giesecke, Matthias
    Abstract: I estimate the effect of retirement on mortality, exploiting two discontinuities at age-based eligibility thresholds for pension claiming in Germany. The analysis is based on unique social security records that document the age at death for the universe of participants in the German public pension system. Using variation from bunching of retirements at age-based eligibility thresholds, I demonstrate that retirement can have both mortality-decreasing and mortality-increasing effects, depending on the group of retirees who comply to eligibility at each threshold. To reconcile heterogeneous effects with likewise mixed results from the literature I provide evidence that the retirement-mortality nexus is driven by the activity change at retirement.
    Keywords: retirement,mortality,age-based eligibility thresholds,regression discontinuity design
    JEL: H55 I12 J14 J26
    Date: 2019
  8. By: Dow, Wiiliam H; Godoey, Anna; Lowenstein, Christopher A; Reich, Michael
    Abstract: Midlife mortality has risen steadily in the U.S. since the 1990s for non-Hispanic whites without a bachelor’s degree, and since 2013 for Hispanics and African-Americans who lack a bachelor’s degree. These increases largely reflect increased mortality from alcohol poisoning, drug overdose and suicide. We investigate whether these “deaths of despair” trends have been mitigated by two key policies aimed at raising incomes for low wage workers: the minimum wage and the earned income tax credit (EITC). To do so, we leverage state variation in policies over time to estimate difference-in-differences models of drug overdose deaths and suicides, using data on cause-specific mortality rates from 1999-2015. Our causal models find no significant effects of the minimum wage and EITC on drug-related mortality. However, higher minimum wages and EITCs significantly reduce non-drug suicides. A 10 percent increase in the minimum wage reduces non-drug suicides among adults with high school or less by 3.6 percent; a 10 percent increase in the EITC reduces suicides among this group by 5.5 percent. Our estimated models do not find significant effects for a college-educated placebo sample. Event-study models confirm parallel pre-trends, further supporting the validity of our causal research design. Our estimates suggest that increasing both the minimum wage and the EITC by 10 percent would likely prevent a combined total of around 1230 suicides each year.
    Keywords: Social and Behavioral Sciences, MINIMUM WAGE, LIVING WAGE
    Date: 2019–04–01

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