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Marriage penalties, marriage, and cohabitation

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  • Fisher, Hayley

Abstract

I examine the effect of marriage penalties in the US income tax system on marital status. I construct a simulated instrument that exploits variation in the tax code over time and between US states to deal with potential endogeneity between the marriage penalty a couple faces and their marital status. I find that a $1000 increase in the marriage penalty faced reduces the probability of marriage by 1.7 percentage points, an effect four times larger than previously estimated. Those in the lowest education groups respond by as much as 2.7 percentage points, with the average response declining as education increases.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2123/7884
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Sydney, School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2011-12.

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Date of creation: Sep 2011
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Handle: RePEc:syd:wpaper:2123/7884

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Postal: Sydney, NSW 2006
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Web page: http://sydney.edu.au/arts/economics
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Related research

Keywords: marriage; cohabitation; marriage penalty;

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References

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  1. Whittington, L.A. & Peters, H.E., 1989. "Fertility And The Personal Exemption: Implicit Pronatalist Policy In The United States," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center 89-6, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
  2. Leigh, Andrew, 2010. "Who Benefits from the Earned Income Tax Credit? Incidence among Recipients, Coworkers and Firms," IZA Discussion Papers 4960, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Daniel R. Feenberg & Harvey S. Rosen, 1994. "Recent Developments in the Marriage Tax," NBER Working Papers 4705, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Sara LaLumia, 2006. "The Effects of Joint Taxation of Married Couples on Labor Supply and Non-wage Income," Working Papers 28, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
  5. Alm, James & Whittington, Leslie A, 1999. "For Love or Money? The Impact of Income Taxes on Marriage," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 66(263), pages 297-316, August.
  6. Frank F. Furstenberg, 2007. "Should government promote marriage?," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(4), pages 956-960.
  7. James Alm & Stacy Dickert-Conlin & Leslie A. Whittington, 1999. "Policy Watch: The Marriage Penalty," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(3), pages 193-204, Summer.
  8. Janet Holtzblatt & Robert Rebelein, 2000. "Measuring the Effect of the EITC on Marriage Penalties and Bonuses," JCPR Working Papers 127, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  9. Daniel Feenberg & Elisabeth Coutts, 1993. "An introduction to the TAXSIM model," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(1), pages 189-194.
  10. Sjoquist, David L. & Walker, Mary Beth, 1995. "The Marriage Tax and the Rate and Timing of Marriage," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 48(4), pages 547-58, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Stevenson, Adam, 2012. "The Labor Supply And Tax Revenue Consequences Of Federal Same-Sex Marriage Legalization," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 65(4), pages 783-806, December.
  2. Fisher, Hayley, 2012. "Just a piece of paper? The effect of marriage on health," Working Papers 2012-17, University of Sydney, School of Economics.

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