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Lady and the Trump: Status and Wealth in the Marriage Market

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  • Almenberg, Johan

    ()
    (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)

  • Dreber, Anna

    ()
    (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)

Abstract

We examine a relatively neglected aspect of intergenerational transmission of economic standing, namely culturally determined status markers and their valuation in the marriage market. We take nobility to be such a status marker. Using data on Swedish marriages, we test the hypothesis that nobility have a greater probability of marrying "up" in terms of wealth. We find a large and statistically significant positive effect for nobility. This finding has important implications for the intergenerational transmission of inequality, and for the longevity of the institution of nobility itself.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Stockholm School of Economics in its series Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance with number 690.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: 12 Jan 2008
Date of revision: 10 Jul 2008
Handle: RePEc:hhs:hastef:0690

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Keywords: Marriage; Status; Intergenerational Transmission; Nobility;

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  1. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
  2. Raquel Fernandez & Nezih Guner & John Knowles, 2001. "Love and Money: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis of Household Sorting and Inequality," NBER Working Papers 8580, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Kremer, Michael, 1997. "How Much Does Sorting Increase Inequality?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 115-39, February.
  4. Fernández, Raquel & Rogerson, Richard, 2000. "Sorting and Long-Run Inequality," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 2352, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Alberto Bisin & Thierry Verdier, 2000. ""Beyond The Melting Pot": Cultural Transmission, Marriage, And The Evolution Of Ethnic And Religious Traits," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 955-988, August.
  6. Benny Moldovanu & Aner Sela & Xianwen Shi, 2007. "Contests for Status," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 338-363.
  7. Sheryl Ball & Catherine Eckel & Philip J. Grossman & William Zame, 2001. "Status In Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 116(1), pages 161-188, February.
  8. Samuel Bowles & Herbert Gintis, 2002. "The Inheritance of Inequality," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 3-30, Summer.
  9. Scott Drewianka, 2003. "Estimating Social Effects in Matching Markets: Externalities in Spousal Search," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 409-423, May.
  10. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy & Ivan Werning, 2005. "The Equilibrium Distribution of Income and the Market for Status," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 282-310, April.
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Cited by:
  1. Esther Duflo & Abhijit Banerjee & Maitreesh Ghatak & Jeanne Lafortune, 2009. "Marry for What? Caste and Mate Selection in Modern India," Working Papers id:2144, eSocialSciences.
  2. Yamamura, Eiji, 2009. "Socio-economic status, gender, and spouse’s earnings: affect of family background on matching," MPRA Paper 17100, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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