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The Male Marital Earnings Premium in the Context of Bride Wealth Payments: Evidence from South Africa

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  • Daniela Casale
  • Dorrit Posel
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    Abstract

    This study explores the nature of the male marital earnings premium in the context of a developing country in which the payment of bride wealth is practiced. We use data from the South African Labor Force Survey of September 2004 and the Labor Force Survey Panel (2001-4), the first national panel available in South Africa. We show that a robust and positive premium to marriage in cross-sectional estimations is substantially reduced after controlling for individual fixed effects. Furthermore, we find evidence of an additional source of endogeneity created by the positive selection of men into marriage with faster earnings growth in the initial periods of the panel. Our results are to be expected if the payment of bride wealth or ilobolo, by a prospective husband to the bride's family, is a significant constraint to marriage among black men in South Africa. (c) 2010 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved..

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    File URL: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/pdf/10.1086/647976
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Economic Development and Cultural Change.

    Volume (Year): 58 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2 (01)
    Pages: 211-230

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    Handle: RePEc:ucp:ecdecc:v:58:y:2010:i:2:p:211-230

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    Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/EDCC/

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    Cited by:
    1. Haroon Bhorat & Sumayya Goga, 2012. "The Gender Wage Gap in the Post-apartheid South African Labour Market," Working Papers 12148, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
    2. Casale, Daniela & Posel, Dorrit, 2011. "English language proficiency and earnings in a developing country: The case of South Africa," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 385-393, August.

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