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The Impact of Welfare Benefits on Single Motherhood and Headship of Young Women: Evidence from the Census

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  • Francine D. Blau
  • Lawrence M. Kahn
  • FJane Waldfogel

Abstract

This paper uses data from the 1970, 1980, and 1990 Censuses to investigate the impact of welfare benefits across Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) on the incidence of single motherhood and headship for young women. A contribution of the paper is the inclusion of both MSA fixed effects and MSA-specific time trends to account for fixed and trending unmeasured factors that could influence both welfare benefit levels and family formation. In such a model, we find no effect of welfare benefits on single motherhood for whites or blacks, and a positive effect of welfare benefits on single headship only for blacks.

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File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/XXXIX/2/382
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 39 (2004)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:39:y:2004:i:2:p382-404

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Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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References

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  1. Hilary Williamson Hoynes, 1995. "Does Welfare Play Any Role in Female Headship Decisions?," NBER Working Papers 5149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Jaeger, David A, 1997. "Reconciling the Old and New Census Bureau Education Questions: Recommendations for Researchers," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 15(3), pages 300-309, July.
  3. Wei-Yin Hu, 2001. "Welfare and Family Stability: Do Benefits Affect When Children Leave the Nest?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(2), pages 274-303.
  4. Robert Moffitt & Robert Reville & Anne Winkler, 1998. "Beyond single mothers: Cohabitation and marriage in the AFDC program," Demography, Springer, vol. 35(3), pages 259-278, August.
  5. Topel, Robert H, 1986. "Local Labor Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages S111-43, June.
  6. Robert Moffitt, 1994. "Welfare Effects on Female Headship with Area Effects," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(2), pages 621-636.
  7. Marianne E. Page & Joanne Spetz & Jane Millar, 2000. "Does the Minimum Wage Affect Welfare Caseloads?," JCPR Working Papers 135, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  8. Bound, John & Holzer, Harry J, 1993. "Industrial Shifts, Skills Levels, and the Labor Market for White and Black Males," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(3), pages 387-96, August.
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  10. Sanders Korenman & David Neumark, 1991. "Does Marriage Really Make Men More Productive?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 282-307.
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  12. R. A. Moffitt, . "The Effect of Welfare on Marriage and Fertility: What Do We Know and What Do We Need to Know?," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1153-97, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  13. Timothy J. Bartik, . "Who Benefits from Local Job Growth: Migrants or Original Residents?," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles tjb1993rs, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  14. Robert G. Wood, 1995. "Marriage Rates and Marriageable Men: A Test of the Wilson Hypothesis," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(1), pages 163-193.
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  19. Robert Hutchens & George Jakubson & Saul Schwartz, 1989. "AFDC and the Formation of Subfamilies," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 24(4), pages 599-628.
  20. Winkler, Anne E., 1992. "The impact of housing costs on the living arrangements of single mothers," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 388-403, November.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Bargain, Olivier & Doorley, Karina, 2009. "Caught in the Trap? The Disincentive Effect of Social Assistance," IRISS Working Paper Series 2009-10, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
  2. Gonzalez, Libertad, 2007. "The effect of benefits on single motherhood in Europe," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 393-412, June.
  3. Gonzalez, Libertad, 2005. "The Determinants of the Prevalence of Single Mothers: A Cross-Country Analysis," IZA Discussion Papers 1677, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. DAVID M. BLAU & WILBERT van der KLAAUW, 2013. "What Determines Family Structure?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 51(1), pages 579-604, 01.
  5. Abe, Yukiko, 2013. "Regional variations in labor force behavior of women in Japan," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 112-124.
  6. Michael Baker & Emily Hanna & Jasmin Kantarevic, 2003. "The Married Widow: Marriage Penalties Matter!," NBER Working Papers 9782, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. David Brady & Rebekah Burroway, 2012. "Targeting, Universalism, and Single-Mother Poverty: A Multilevel Analysis Across 18 Affluent Democracies," Demography, Springer, vol. 49(2), pages 719-746, May.
  8. Frish, Roni & Zussman, Noam, 2008. "The effect of transfer payments on the labor supply of single mothers," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 627-643, April.
  9. Siv Gustafsson & Seble Y. Worku, 2006. "Marriage Markets and Single Motherhood in South Africa," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 06-102/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  10. Marah Curtis & Jane Waldfogel, 2009. "Fertility Timing of Unmarried and Married Mothers: Evidence on Variation Across U.S. Cities from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer, vol. 28(5), pages 569-588, October.
  11. Julien O. Teitler & Nancy E. Reichman & Lenna Nepomnyaschy & Irwin Garfinkel, 2006. "Effects of Welfare Participation on Marriage," Working Papers 933, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing..

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