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Intrafamily Resource Allocations: A Dynamic Model of Birth Weight

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  • del Bono, Emilia
  • Ermisch, John F
  • Francesconi, Marco

Abstract

This paper estimates a model of dynamic intrahousehold investment behavior which incorporates family fixed effects and child endowment heterogeneity. This framework is applied to large American and British survey data on birth outcomes, with focus on the effects of antenatal parental smoking and maternal labor supply net of other maternal behavior and child characteristics. We find that maternal smoking during pregnancy reduces birth weight and fetal growth, while paternal smoking has virtually no effect. Mothers' work interruptions of up to two months before birth have a positive effect on birth outcomes, especially among British children. Parental behavior appears to respond to permanent family-specific unobservables and to child idiosyncratic endowments in a way that suggests that parents have equal concerns, rather than efficiency motives, in allocating their prenatal inputs across children. Evidence of equal concerns emerges also from the analysis of breastfeeding decisions, although the effects in this case are weaker.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6970.

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Date of creation: Sep 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6970

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Keywords: Birth outcomes; child health production functions; instrumental variables; mother's work; sibling estimators; smoking;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Veronica Amarante & Marco Manacorda & Edward Miguel & Andrea Vigorito, 2011. "Social Assistance and Birth Outcomes: Evidence from the Uruguayan PANES," Research Department Publications 4714, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  2. Frijters, Paul & Johnston, David W. & Shah, Manisha & Shields, Michael A., 2010. "Intra-household Resource Allocation: Do Parents Reduce or Reinforce Child Cognitive Ability Gaps?," IZA Discussion Papers 5153, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. van den Berg, Gerard J. & Pinger, Pia R. & Schoch, Johannes, 2012. "Instrumental variable estimation of the causal effect of hunger early in life on health later in life," ZEW Discussion Papers 12-019, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  4. Verónica Amarante & Marco Manacorda & Edward Miguel & Andrea Vigorito, 2011. "Do Cash Transfers Improve Birth Outcomes? Evidence from Matched Vital Statistics, Social Security and Program Data," NBER Working Papers 17690, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Wüst, Miriam, 2010. "The effect of cigarette and alcohol consumption on birth outcomes," Working Papers 10-5, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
  6. Frauke H. Peter & C. Katharina Spiess, 2011. "The Bigger the Children, the Bigger the Worries: Are Preschoolers and Adolescents Affected Differently by Family Instability with Regard to Non-cognitive Skills?," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 367, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  7. T. Paul Schultz, 2009. "Population and Health Policies," Working Papers 974, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  8. Lundberg, Shelly, 2013. "Educational Inequality and the Returns to Skills," IZA Discussion Papers 7595, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Hilary W. Hoynes & Douglas L. Miller & David Simon, 2012. "Income, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and Infant Health," NBER Working Papers 18206, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Paul Frijters & David Johnston & Manisha Shah & Michael Shields, 2013. "Intrahousehold Resource Allocation: Do Parents Reduce or Reinforce Child Ability Gaps?," Demography, Springer, vol. 50(6), pages 2187-2208, December.
  11. Berg, Gerard J. van den & Pinger, Pia & Schoch, Johannes, 2012. "Instrumental Variable Estimation of the Causal Effect of Hunger Early in Life on Health Later in Life," Working Papers 12-02, University of Mannheim, Department of Economics.

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