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The Consequences of Teenage Childbearing: Consistent Estimates When Abortion Makes Miscarriage Non‐random

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  • Adam Ashcraft
  • Iván Fernández‐Val
  • Kevin Lang

Abstract

We examine the e¤ect of teenage childbearing on the adult outcomes of a sample of women who gave birth, miscarried or had an abortion as teenagers. Because teens who abort are more favorably selected than the set of teens who become pregnant, teens who miscarry are less favorably selected than those who either give birth or abort but more favorably selected than those who give birth. Consequently, using miscarriage as an instrument for non- birth is biased towards a benign view of teen motherhood while OLS on a sample of those giving birth or miscarrying is biased towards a negative view. We derive a consistent estimate based on a weighted average of OLS and IV. The estimated e¤ects are generally adverse but modest.
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  • Adam Ashcraft & Iván Fernández‐Val & Kevin Lang, 2013. "The Consequences of Teenage Childbearing: Consistent Estimates When Abortion Makes Miscarriage Non‐random," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 123, pages 875-905, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:123:y:2013:i::p:875-905
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jason M. Fletcher & Barbara L. Wolfe, 2009. "Education and Labor Market Consequences of Teenage Childbearing: Evidence Using the Timing of Pregnancy Outcomes and Community Fixed Effects," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 44(2).
    2. Ribar, David C, 1994. "Teenage Fertility and High School Completion," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(3), pages 413-424, August.
    3. Kaplan, Greg & Goodman, Alissa & Walker, Ian, 2004. "Understanding the Effects of Early Motherhood in Britain: The Effects on Mothers," IZA Discussion Papers 1131, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Arnaud Chevalier & Tarja K. Viitanen & Tarja K. Viitanen, 2003. "The long-run labour market consequences of teenage motherhood in Britain," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 16(2), pages 323-343, May.
    5. John J. Donohue & Steven D. Levitt, 1999. "Legalized Abortion and Crime," JCPR Working Papers 104, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
    6. Adam Ashcraft & Kevin Lang, 2006. "The Consequences of Teenage Childbearing," NBER Working Papers 12485, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Arline T. Geronimus & Sanders Korenman, 1992. "The Socioeconomic Consequences of Teen Childbearing Reconsidered," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1187-1214.
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