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Swedish Family Policy, Fertility and Female Wages

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Recent demographic literature shows in Swedish micro-level data a positive effect of female wage income or female education on fertility. The literature explains this finding with Swedish family policies of high subsidies for bought-in child care and generous parental leave benefits that are calculated on the basis of a woman's prior wage income. Both policies would cause the substitution effect from an increase in female wages on fertility to be dominated by its income effect. This paper shows within an economic model that there are offsetting effects from Swedish family policy that cause the reduction in the magnitude of the substitution effect of female wages to be most likely rather small.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Loughborough University in its series Discussion Paper Series with number 2006_7.

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Date of creation: Mar 2006
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Handle: RePEc:lbo:lbowps:2006_7

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Keywords: Fertility; family policy; gender equality.;

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  1. Jan M. Hoem, 2005. "Why does Sweden have such high fertility?," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2005-009, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  2. Walker, James R, 1995. "The Effect of Public Policies on Recent Swedish Fertility Behavior," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 223-51, August.
  3. Namkee Ahn & Pedro Mira, . "A note on the changing relationship between fertility and female employment rates in developed countries," Working Papers 99-09, FEDEA.
  4. James R. Walker, 2002. "A Comment on Ali Tasiran's `Wage and income effects on the timing and spacing of births in Sweden and in the United States'," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 15(4), pages 773-782.
  5. Tomás Sobotka, 2004. "Is Lowest-Low Fertility in Europe Explained by the Postponement of Childbearing?," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 30(2), pages 195-220.
  6. Gunnar Andersson, 2005. "A study on policies and practices in selected countries that encourage childbirth: the case of Sweden," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2005-005, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  7. Alicia Adsera, 2005. "Vanishing Children: From High Unemployment to Low Fertility in Developed Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 189-193, May.
  8. Øystein Kravdal, 2001. "The High Fertility of College Educated Women in Norway," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 5(6), pages 187-216, December.
  9. Ermisch, John F, 1988. "Purchased Child Care, Optimal Family Size and Mother's Employment," CEPR Discussion Papers 238, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Jan M. Hoem, 2005. "Why does Sweden have such high fertility?," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 13(22), pages 559-572, November.
  11. Patricia Apps & Ray Rees, 2004. "Fertility, Taxation and Family Policy," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(4), pages 745-763, December.
  12. 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.
  13. Heckman, James J & Walker, James R, 1990. "The Relationship between Wages and Income and the Timing and Spacing of Births: Evidence from Swedish Longitudinal Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(6), pages 1411-41, November.
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