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Black-White Marital Matching: Race, Anthropometrics, and Socioeconomics

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Author Info

  • Chiappori, Pierre-André

    ()
    (Columbia University)

  • Oreffice, Sonia

    ()
    (University of Surrey)

  • Quintana-Domeque, Climent

    ()
    (University of Oxford)

Abstract

We analyze the interaction of race with physical and socioeconomic characteristics in the U.S. marriage market, using the Panel Study of Income Dynamics from 1999 to 2009 for black, white, and inter-racial couples. We consider the anthropometric characteristics of both spouses, together with their wage and education, and estimate who inter-racially marries whom along these dimensions. Distinctive patterns arise by gender and race for inter-married individuals: the black women who inter-marry are the thinner and more educated in their group; instead, white women are the fatter and less educated; black or white men who inter-marry are poorer and thinner. While women in "mixed" couples find a spouse who is poorer but thinner than if they intra-married, black men match with a white woman who is more educated than if they intra-married, and a white man finds a thinner spouse in a black woman.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6196.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6196

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Keywords: wages; BMI; marriage market; interracial couples; education;

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References

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  1. Pierre-Andre Chiappori & Murat Iyigun & Yoram Weiss, 2006. "Investment in Schooling and the Marriage Market," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_034, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  2. Shannon Seitz, 2009. "Accounting for Racial Differences in Marriage and Employment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(3), pages 385-437, 07.
  3. Christian A. Gregory & Christopher J. Ruhm, 2011. "Where Does the Wage Penalty Bite?," NBER Chapters, in: Economic Aspects of Obesity, pages 315-347 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Pierre-André Chiappori & Sonia Oreffice & Climent Quintana-Domeque, 2010. "Fatter Attraction: Anthropometric and Socioeconomic Matching on the Marriage Market," Working Papers 2011-012, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  5. Mary A. Burke & Frank Heiland, 2008. "Race, obesity, and the puzzle of gender specificity," Working Papers 08-8, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  6. Mariagiovanna Baccara & Allan Collard-Wexler & Leonardo Felli & Leeat Yariv, 2010. "Child-Adoption Matching: Preferences for Gender and Race," NBER Working Papers 16444, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Oreffice, Sonia & Quintana-Domeque, Climent, 2010. "Anthropometry and socioeconomics among couples: Evidence in the United States," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 373-384, December.
  8. Lisa Barrow & Cecilia Elena Rouse, 2005. "Do Returns to Schooling Differ by Race and Ethnicity?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 83-87, May.
  9. David Card & Jesse Rothstein, 2005. "Racial Segregation and the Black-White Test Score Gap," Working Papers 879, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  10. Hani Mansour & Terra McKinnish, 2011. "Who Marries Differently-Aged Spouses?: Earnings, Ability and Appearance," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1123, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  11. Alan Krueger & Jesse Rothstein & Sarah Turner, 2006. "Race, Income, and College in 25 Years: Evaluating Justice O'Connor's Conjecture," American Law and Economics Review, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(2), pages 282-311.
  12. John Cawley, 2004. "The Impact of Obesity on Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  13. David Johnston & Wang-Sheng Lee, 2011. "Explaining the Female Black-White Obesity Gap: A Decomposition Analysis of Proximal Causes," Demography, Springer, vol. 48(4), pages 1429-1450, November.
  14. Linda Y. Wong, 2003. "Why so only 5.5% of Black Men Marry White Women?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(3), pages 803-826, 08.
  15. Kerwin Kofi Charles & Ming Ching Luoh, 2010. "Male Incarceration, the Marriage Market, and Female Outcomes," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(3), pages 614-627, August.
  16. Grossbard, Shoshana & Gimenez-Nadal, Jose Ignacio & Molina, José Alberto, 2010. "Racial Discrimination and Household Chores," IZA Discussion Papers 5345, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  17. Inas Rashad Kelly & Dhaval M. Dave & Jody L. Sindelar & William T. Gallo, 2011. "The Impact of Early Occupational Choice On Health Behaviors," NBER Working Papers 16803, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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