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Marry Your Like: Assortative Mating and Income Inequality

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Author Info

  • Jeremy Greenwood
  • Nezih Guner
  • Georgi Kocharkov
  • Cezar Santos

Abstract

Has there been an increase in positive assortative mating? Does assortative mating contribute to household income inequality? Data from the United States Census Bureau suggests there has been a rise in assortative mating. Additionally, assortative mating affects household income inequality. In particular, if matching in 2005 between husbands and wives had been random, instead of the pattern observed in the data, then the Gini coefficient would have fallen from the observed 0.43 to 0.34, so that income inequality would be smaller. Thus, assortative mating is important for income inequality. The high level of married female labor-force participation in 2005 is important for this result.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 748.

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Date of creation: Jan 2014
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:748

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Keywords: assortative mating; married female labor supply; inequality;

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  1. Nezih Guner & Georgi Kocharkov & Cezar Santos & Jeremy Greenwood, 2012. "Technology And The Changing Family: A Unified Model Of Marriage, Divorce, Educational Attainment And Married Female Labor-Force Participation," 2012 Meeting Papers 168, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Christine Schwartz & Robert Mare, 2005. "Trends in educational assortative marriage from 1940 to 2003," Demography, Springer, vol. 42(4), pages 621-646, November.
  3. Maria Cancian & Deborah Reed, 1998. "Assessing The Effects Of Wives' Earnings On Family Income Inequality," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 73-79, February.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Love & class
    by chris dillow in Stumbling and Mumbling on 2014-02-14 14:06:14
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Cited by:
  1. Lasse Eika & Magne Mogstad & Basit Zafar, 2014. "Educational Assortative Mating and Household Income Inequality," NBER Working Papers 20271, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Bicakova, Alena & Jurajda, Štepán, 2014. "The Quiet Revolution and the Family: Gender Composition of Tertiary Education and Early Fertility Patterns," IZA Discussion Papers 7965, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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