IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Income taxation, labour supply and housework: A discrete choice model for French couples


  • Kabátek, Jan
  • van Soest, Arthur
  • Stancanelli, Elena


Earlier studies suggest that income taxation may affect not only labour supply but also domestic work. Here we investigate the impact of income taxation on partners' labour supply and housework, using data for France that taxes incomes of married couples jointly. We estimate a household utility model in which the marginal utilities of leisure and housework of both partners are modelled as random coefficients, depending on observed and unobserved characteristics. We conclude that both partners' market and housework hours are responsive to changes in the tax system. A policy simulation suggests that replacing joint taxation of married spouses' incomes with separate taxation would increase the husband's housework hours by 1.3% and reduce his labour supply by 0.8%. The wife's market hours would increase by 3.7%, and her housework hours would fall by 2.0%.

Suggested Citation

  • Kabátek, Jan & van Soest, Arthur & Stancanelli, Elena, 2014. "Income taxation, labour supply and housework: A discrete choice model for French couples," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 30-43.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:27:y:2014:i:c:p:30-43
    DOI: 10.1016/j.labeco.2014.01.004

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Richard Blundell & Ian Walker, 1986. "A Life-Cycle Consistent Empirical Model of Family Labour Supply Using Cross-Section Data," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(4), pages 539-558.
    2. Keane, Michael & Moffitt, Robert, 1998. "A Structural Model of Multiple Welfare Program Participation and Labor Supply," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(3), pages 553-589, August.
    3. Michael Burda & Daniel Hamermesh & Philippe Weil, 2013. "Total work and gender: facts and possible explanations," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 26(1), pages 239-261, January.
    4. van Soest, Arthur & Das, Marcel & Gong, Xiaodong, 2002. "A structural labour supply model with flexible preferences," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 107(1-2), pages 345-374, March.
    5. Alberto Alesina & Andrea Ichino & Loukas Karabarbounis, 2011. "Gender-Based Taxation and the Division of Family Chores," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 1-40, May.
    6. Hoynes, Hilary Williamson, 1996. "Welfare Transfers in Two-Parent Families: Labor Supply and Welfare Participation under AFDC-UP," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 295-332, March.
    7. Olivier Bargain & Kristian Orsini & Andreas Peichl, 2012. "Comparing Labor Supply Elasticities in Europe and the US: New Results," Working Papers halshs-00805736, HAL.
    8. Richard Blundell & Antoine Bozio & Guy Laroque, 2013. "Extensive and Intensive Margins of Labour Supply: Work and Working Hours in the US, the UK and France," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 34(1), pages 1-29, March.
    9. Apps, Patricia & Rees, Ray, 1999. "On the taxation of trade within and between households," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 241-263, August.
    10. Apps, Patricia F. & Rees, Ray, 1988. "Taxation and the household," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 355-369, April.
    11. Rees, Ray, 1988. "Taxation and the Household," Munich Reprints in Economics 3411, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    12. Olivier Bargain & Kristian Orsini & Andreas Peichl, 2014. "Comparing Labor Supply Elasticities in Europe and the United States: New Results," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 49(3), pages 723-838.
    13. François Bourguignon & Thierry Magnac, 1990. "Labor Supply and Taxation in France," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(3), pages 358-389.
    14. Train,Kenneth E., 2009. "Discrete Choice Methods with Simulation," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521747387, March.
    15. Aaberge, Rolf & Dagsvik, John K & Strom, Steinar, 1995. " Labor Supply Responses and Welfare Effects of Tax Reforms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 97(4), pages 635-659, December.
    16. Aaberge, Rolf & Colombino, Ugo & Strom, Steinar, 1999. "Labour Supply in Italy: An Empirical Analysis of Joint Household Decisions, with Taxes and Quantity Constraints," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(4), pages 403-422, July-Aug..
    17. Viktor Steiner & Katharina Wrohlich, 2004. "Household Taxation, Income Splitting and Labor Supply Incentives – A Microsimulation Study for Germany," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 50(3), pages 541-568.
    18. Richard Rogerson, 2009. "Market Work, Home Work, and Taxes: A Cross-Country Analysis," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(3), pages 588-601, August.
    19. Dagsvik, John K, 1994. "Discrete and Continuous Choice, Max-Stable Processes, and Independence from Irrelevant Attributes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(5), pages 1179-1205, September.
    20. Patricia Apps & Ray Rees, 2011. "Optimal Taxation and Tax Reform for Two-Earner Households," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 57(2), pages 283-304, June.
    21. Hans Bloemen & Elena Stancanelli, 2014. "Market hours, household work, child care, and wage rates of partners: an empirical analysis," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 51-81, March.
    22. repec:adr:anecst:y:2012:i:105-106:p:11 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Leuthold, Jane H., 1983. "Home production and the tax system," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 145-157, June.
    24. Arthur van Soest, 1995. "Structural Models of Family Labor Supply: A Discrete Choice Approach," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(1), pages 63-88.
    25. Alexander M. Gelber & Joshua W. Mitchell, 2012. "Taxes and Time Allocation: Evidence from Single Women and Men," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(3), pages 863-897.
    26. Tim Callan & Arthur van Soest & John R. Walsh, 2009. "Tax Structure and Female Labour Supply: Evidence from Ireland," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 23(1), pages 1-35, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. repec:esr:wpaper:bp2016/1 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Gulzida I. NEMIROVA & Yulia G. TYURINA, 2015. "Ways Of Possible Use Of Foreign Experience In Mechanism Of Tax Reduction For Individuals In Russia," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 15(2), pages 71-80.
    3. Patricia Apps & Jan Kabátek & Ray Rees & Arthur Soest, 2016. "Labor supply heterogeneity and demand for child care of mothers with young children," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 51(4), pages 1641-1677, December.
    4. Kabátek, Jan, 2015. "Essays on public policy and household decision making," Other publications TiSEM 8cdb178e-ad98-42e5-a7e1-b, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    5. Mideros Andrés & O’Donoghue Cathal, 2015. "The Effect of Unconditional Cash Transfers on Adult Labour Supply: A Unitary Discrete Choice Model for the Case of Ecuador," Basic Income Studies, De Gruyter, vol. 10(2), pages 225-255, December.
    6. Leslie S. Stratton, 2015. "The determinants of housework time," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 133-133, March.
    7. Melanie Schröder & Norma Burow, 2016. "Couple's Labor Supply, Taxes, and the Division of Housework in a Gender-Neutral Lab," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1593, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.

    More about this item


    Time use; Taxation; Discrete choice models;

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • C35 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:27:y:2014:i:c:p:30-43. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.