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Personality traits and the marriage market

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  • Alfred Galichon

    (Département d'économie)

  • Arnaud Dupuy

    (ROA)

Abstract

Which and how many attributes are relevant for the sorting of agents in a matching market? This paper addresses these questions by constructing indices of mutual attractiveness that aggregate information about agents’ attributes. The first k indices for agents on each side of the market provide the best approximation of the matching surplus by a k-dimensional model. The methodology is applied on a unique Dutch household survey containing information about education, height, BMI, health, attitude towards risk and personality traits of spouses. Three important empirical conclusions are drawn. First, sorting in the marriage market is not unidimensional: individuals face important trade-offs between the attributes of their spouses which are not amenable to a single-dimensional index. Second, although education explains a quarter of a couple’s observable surplus, personality traits explain another 20%. Third, different personality traits matter differently for men and for women.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Sciences Po in its series Sciences Po publications with number 6943.

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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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Handle: RePEc:spo:wpmain:info:hdl:2441/7o52iohb7k6srk09mj4j5amb8

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Keywords: m ultidimensional sorting; saliency analysis; marriage market; personali ty traits; continuous logit;

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  1. Marko Tervio, 2008. "The Difference That CEOs Make: An Assignment Model Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 642-68, June.
  2. Alfred Galichon & Bernard Salanié, 2010. "Matching with Trade-offs: Revealed Preferences over Competiting Characteristics," Working Papers hal-00473173, HAL.
  3. Wong, Linda, 2001. "Structural Estimation of Marriage Models," 10th International Conference on Panel Data, Berlin, July 5-6, 2002 A1-1, International Conferences on Panel Data.
  4. Xavier Gabaix & Augustin Landier, 2006. "Why Has CEO Pay Increased So Much?," NBER Working Papers 12365, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  7. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
  8. 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.
  9. Pierre-André Chiappori & Sonia Oreffice & Climent Quintana-Domeque, 2012. "Matching with a Handicap: The Case of Smoking in the Marriage Market," CHILD Working Papers Series 8, Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD) - CCA.
  10. Nicholas Jacquemet & Jean-Marc Robin, 2011. "Marriage with Labor Supply," 2011 Meeting Papers 446, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  11. Gunter J. Hitsch & Ali Horta�su & Dan Ariely, 2010. "Matching and Sorting in Online Dating," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(1), pages 130-63, March.
  12. Bernard Salanié & Alfred Galichon, 2011. "Cupid's Invisible Hand: Social Surplus and Identification in Matching Models," Discussion Papers 1011-03, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  13. Gustaf Bruze, 2011. "Marriage Choices of Movie Stars: Does Spouse’s Education Matter?," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 5(1), pages 1 - 28.
  14. Robin, J.M. & Smith, R.J., 1995. "Tests of Rank," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9521, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  15. Dan Anderberg, 2004. "Getting Hitched: The Equilibrium Marriage Market Behaviour of a British Cohort," Royal Holloway, University of London: Discussion Papers in Economics 04/12, Department of Economics, Royal Holloway University of London, revised Jul 2004.
  16. 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.
  17. Kleibergen, F.R. & Paap, R., 2003. "Generalized Reduced Rank Tests using the Singular Value Decomposition," Econometric Institute Research Papers EI 2003-01, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus School of Economics (ESE), Econometric Institute.
  18. Arnaud Dupuy & Alfred Galichon, 2012. "Canonical Correlation and Assortative Matching: a remark," Working Papers 2012/40, Maastricht School of Management.
  19. Kerwin Kofi Charles & Erik Hurst & Alexandra Killewald, 2011. "Marital Sorting and Parental Wealth," NBER Working Papers 16748, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Federico Echenique & Sangmok Lee & Matthew Shum & M. Bumin Yenmez, 2013. "The Revealed Preference Theory of Stable and Extremal Stable Matchings," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 81(1), pages 153-171, 01.
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Cited by:
  1. Laurens CHERCHYE & Thomas DEMUYNCK & Bram DE ROCK & Frederic VERMEULEN, 2014. "Household consumption when the marriage is stable," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces14.08, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
  2. Abi ADAMS & Laurens CHERCHYE & Bram DE ROCK & Ewout VERRIEST, 2012. "Consume now or later? Time inconsistency, collective choice and revealed preference," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces12.12, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
  3. Arnaud Dupuy & Alfred Galichon, 2012. "Canonical Correlation and Assortative Matching: a remark," Working Papers 2012/40, Maastricht School of Management.

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