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Family policy and the number of children: Evidence from a natural experiment

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  • Egger, Peter H.
  • Radulescu, Doina M.

Abstract

This paper analyzes the effects of family policy on the number of children. A natural experiment which changed regional family policy dramatically was Saarland's reaccession to Germany in 1957. Prior to this date, Saarland was part of France. After 1957, families in Saarland were subject to spouse income splitting instead of the previous family income splitting and other aspects of family policy also changed fundamentally with Saarland's reaccession to Germany. We identify the causal impact of this change by using panel data on newborn children in 45 municipalities in Saarland, and 350 municipalities in surrounding regions in Germany and France. The results suggest that the change in family policy associated with Saarland's reaccession to Germany led to a reduction of births by about one-fifth.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 28 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 524-539

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Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:28:y:2012:i:4:p:524-539

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505544

Related research

Keywords: Family policy; Income splitting; Natural experiment; Fertility;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Thomas Fent & Belinda Aparicio Diaz & Alexia Prskawetz, 2010. "Family Policies in the Context of Low Fertility and Social Structure," Working Papers 1102, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna.
  2. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2013. "Das demographische Defizit – die Fakten, die Folgen, die Ursachen und die Politikimplikationen," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 66(21), pages 03-23, November.

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