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On Population Structure and Marriage Dynamics

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  • Giolito Eugenio

    ()
    (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and IZA)

Abstract

I develop an equilibrium, a two-sided search model of marriage with endogenous population growth, to study the interaction between fertility, the age structure of the population and the age of men and women at first marriage.Within a simple two-period overlapping generation model, I show that given an increase of the desired number of children age at marriage is affected through two different channels. First, as population growth increases, the age structure of the population produces a thicker market for young people, inducing early marriages. The second channel comes from differential fecundity: if the desired number of children is not feasible for older women, women tend to marry younger and men older, with single men outnumbering single women in equilibrium.Using an extended version of the model to a finite number of periods and fertility data, I show that two mechanisms described above may have acted as persistence mechanisms after the U.S. Baby Boom. Specifically, I find that the demographic transitional dynamics after the Baby Boom may account for approximately 23 percent of the increase in men's age of marriage between 1985 and 2009, although the impact on women's age is small.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics.

Volume (Year): 10 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (November)
Pages: 1-54

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejmac:v:10:y:2010:i:1:n:33

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  1. Díaz-Giménez, Javier & Giolito, Eugenio P., 2008. "Gender Differences and the Timing of First Marriages," IZA Discussion Papers 3539, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Bergstrom, T. & Bagnoli, M., 1990. "Courtship as a Waiting Game," Papers 90-12, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
  3. Shannon Seitz, 2009. "Accounting for Racial Differences in Marriage and Employment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(3), pages 385-437, 07.
  4. Bloch, Francis & Ryder, Harl, 2000. "Two-Sided Search, Marriages, and Matchmakers," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 41(1), pages 93-115, February.
  5. Linda Y. Wong, 2001. "Structural Estimation of Marriage Models," Computing in Economics and Finance 2001 222, Society for Computational Economics.
  6. Burdett, Kenneth & Coles, Melvyn G, 1999. "Long-Term Partnership Formation: Marriage and Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(456), pages F307-34, June.
  7. Eugenio Giolito, 2004. "A Search Model of Marriage with Differential Fecundity," Labor and Demography 0402007, EconWPA.
  8. Michael J. Brien & Lee A. Lillard & Steven Stern, 2006. "Cohabitation, Marriage, And Divorce In A Model Of Match Quality," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(2), pages 451-494, 05.
  9. Elizabeth M. Caucutt & Nezih Guner & John Knowles, 2002. "Why Do Women Wait? Matching, Wage Inequality, and the Incentives for Fertility Delay," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(4), pages 815-855, October.
  10. An, Mark Yuying, 1998. "Logconcavity versus Logconvexity: A Complete Characterization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 350-369, June.
  11. Michele Tertilt, 2005. "Polygyny, Fertility, and Savings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(6), pages 1341-1370, December.
  12. Lones Smith, 2006. "The Marriage Model with Search Frictions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(6), pages 1124-1146, December.
  13. Tracy J. Cornelius, 2003. "A Search Model of Marriage and Divorce," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(1), pages 135-155, January.
  14. Burdett, Ken & Coles, Melvyn G, 1997. "Marriage and Class," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 141-68, February.
  15. Coles, Melvyn & Francesconi, Marco, 2007. "On the Emergence of Toyboys: Equilibrium Matching with Ageing and Uncertain Careers," IZA Discussion Papers 2612, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Lena Edlund, 1999. "Son Preference, Sex Rations, and Marriage Patterns," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(6), pages 1275-1304, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Javier Diaz-Jimenez & Eugenio P. Giolito, 2008. "Gender differences and the timing of first marriages," Economics Working Papers we080804, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.

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