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An explanation of the positive correlation between fertility and female employment across Western European countries

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Abstract

Recent literature shows the puzzling result of a positive and significant cross-country correlation between the total fertility rate and the female labour force participation rate across Western European countries. The present paper shows that this cross-country correlation becomes negative and significant, once one corrects the total fertility rate for a distortion, caused by an increasing age of childbearing, and controls in cross-country regressions for purchased child care use and female long-term unemployment. This result survives an empirical analysis in which the female labour force participation rate is treated as an endogenous variable.

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File URL: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/ec/RePEc/lbo/lbowps/Fertility_puzzle.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Loughborough University in its series Discussion Paper Series with number 2006_11.

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Date of creation: Apr 2006
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Handle: RePEc:lbo:lbowps:2006_11

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Keywords: Total fertility rate; female labour force participation rate; purchased child care; female unemployment.;

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  1. Adsera, Alicia, 2005. "Where Are the Babies? Labor Market Conditions and Fertility in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 1576, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Ermisch, John F, 1988. "Purchased Child Care, Optimal Family Size and Mother's Employment," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 238, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. José María Da Rocha & Luisa Fuster, 2003. "Why are Fertility and Female Participation Rates Positively Correlated across OECD countries?," Working Papers 72, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
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  5. Henriette Engelhardt & Alexia Prskawetz, 2009. "A Pooled Time-Series Analysis on the Relation Between Fertility and Female Employment," European Demographic Research Papers, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna 0501, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna.
  6. Galor, Oded & Weil, David, 1995. "The Gender Gap, Fertility and Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 1157, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Ahn, N. & Mira, P., 1999. "A Note on the Changing Relationship Between Fertility and Female Employment Rates in Developed Countries," Papers, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros- 9903, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
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  12. Namkee Ahn & Pedro Mira, . "A note on the changing relationship between fertility and female employment rates in developed countries," Working Papers 99-09, FEDEA.
  13. Henriette Engelhardt & Alexia Prskawetz, 2002. "On the changing correlation between fertility and female employment over space and time," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2002-052, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  14. Patricia Apps & Ray Rees, 2004. "Fertility, Taxation and Family Policy," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(4), pages 745-763, December.
  15. De Cooman, Eric & Ermisch, John F & Joshi, Heather, 1985. "The Next Birth and the Labour Market: A Dynamic Model of Births in England and Wales," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 37, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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Cited by:
  1. Anna Matysiak & Daniele Vignoli, 2006. "Fertility and women’s employment: a meta-analysis," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2006-048, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.

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