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The Timing of Teenage Births and the Economic Returns to Education

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  • Lisa Schulkind

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Trinity College)

Abstract

Teenage mothers tend to have poor economic outcomes later in life. However, the girls who become teenage mothers come from less advantaged backgrounds than those who delay childbearing until later in life, making causality difficult to establish. This paper examines the effect of having a child during high school versus becoming a young mother, but one who has already finished high school. I compare the outcomes of girls who have a child in the end of their senior year of high school to a control group comprised of girls who give birth a few months later. I find that girls who give birth during the school year are 9 percentage points less likely to graduate from high school; however, this has little effect on their eventual labor market outcomes. Despite being much more likely to obtain a High School degree, the control group does not enjoy higher earnings later in life, and is not any more likely to be working.

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File URL: http://internet2.trincoll.edu/repec/WorkingPapers2013/WP13-04.pdf
File Function: First version, 2013
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Trinity College, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1304.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tri:wpaper:1304

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Related research

Keywords: Teenage Childbearing; Signaling Value; High School Degree;

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  1. Kasey S. Buckles & Daniel M. Hungerman, 2013. "Season of Birth and Later Outcomes: Old Questions, New Answers," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(3), pages 711-724, July.
  2. V. Joseph Hotz & Susan Williams McElroy & Seth G. Sanders, 1999. "Teenage Childbearing and Its Life Cycle Consequences: Exploiting a Natural Experiment," JCPR Working Papers 157, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  3. Adam Ashcraft & Kevin Lang, 2006. "The Consequences of Teenage Childbearing," NBER Working Papers 12485, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Geronimus, Arline T & Korenman, Sanders, 1992. "The Socioeconomic Consequences of Teen Childbearing Reconsidered," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1187-214, November.
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