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Culture and household decision making: Native and foreign-born couples' balance of power and labor supply choices in the US

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Author Info

  • Sonia Oreffice

    (Universidad de Alicante)

Abstract

This study investigates how spouses’ cultural backgrounds mediate the role of intra-household bargaining in the labor supply decisions of foreign-born and US-native couples, in a collective-household framework. Using data from the 2000 US Census I show that the labor supplies of US-born couples, and of those foreign-born coming from countries with family institutions similar to the US, are significantly related to bargaining power forces such as differences between spouses in age, and non-labor income, controlling for both spouses’ demographic and socioeconomic characteristics. Households whose culture of origin supports strict and unequal gender roles do not exhibit any association of balance of power and their labor supply decisions. This cultural asymmetry suggests that spousal traits are assessed differently across couples within the US, and that how households make use of their outside opportunities and economic and institutional environment may depend on their ethnicities.

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File URL: http://www.ivie.es/downloads/docs/wpasad/wpasad-2011-18.pdf
File Function: Fisrt version / Primera version, 2011
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie) in its series Working Papers. Serie AD with number 2011-18.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published by Ivie
Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasad:2011-18

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Keywords: Culture; Household bargaining power; Labor supply.;

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  1. Iliana Reggio, 2010. "The influence of the mother's power on her child's labor in Mexico," Economics Working Papers we101305, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  2. Francine D Blau & Lawrence M Kahn & Kerry L Papps, 2011. "Gender, Source Country Characteristics, and Labor Market Assimilation among Immigrants," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(1), pages 43-58, February.
  3. Antecol, Heather, 2000. "An examination of cross-country differences in the gender gap in labor force participation rates," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 409-426, July.
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