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Labor force transitions of older married couples in Germany

  • Blau, David M.
  • Riphahn, Regina T.

This study investigates the labor force behavior of older married couples in Germany. Monthly observations from the first eleven waves of the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) are used to describe and analyze the relationship between the labor force behavior of husbands and wives. The empirical model is a discrete time, competing risks hazard model of transitions among labor force states defined by the employment status of both spouses. The analysis indicates that the probability of one spouse exiting employment is much larger if the other spouse is not employed than if the other spouse is employed. Similarly, one member of a couple is much more likely to enter employment if the spouse is employed than if the spouse is not employed. Observed covariates including wages and retirement benefits help to explain these patterns, but unobserved preferences for shared leisure also appear to play an important role.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Labour Economics.

Volume (Year): 6 (1999)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 229-252

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Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:6:y:1999:i:2:p:229-252
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/labeco

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  1. 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.
  2. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1988. "Rational Household Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 63-90, January.
  3. Börsch-Supan, Axel & Schnabel, Reinhold, 1997. "Social security and retirement in germany," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 97-20, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  4. Bound, John & Schoenbaum, Michael & Stinebrickner, Todd R. & Waidmann, Timothy, 1999. "The dynamic effects of health on the labor force transitions of older workers," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 179-202, June.
  5. Courtney Coile & Jonathan Gruber, 2000. "Social Security and Retirement," NBER Working Papers 7830, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. John Rust & Christopher Phelan, 1994. "How Social Security and Medicare Affect Retirement Behavior in a World of Incomplete Markets," Public Economics 9406005, EconWPA, revised 06 Jul 1994.
  7. Donna B. Gilleskie & David M. Blau, 2006. "Health insurance and retirement of married couples," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(7), pages 935-953.
  8. Blau, David M., 1997. "Social security and the labor supply of older married couples," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 373-418, December.
  9. Falkinger, Josef & Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf & Zweimüller, Josef, 1994. "Retirement of Spouses and Social Security Reform," CEPR Discussion Papers 855, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  11. Manser, Marilyn & Brown, Murray, 1980. "Marriage and Household Decision-Making: A Bargaining Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 21(1), pages 31-44, February.
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  13. Chiappori, P.A., 1989. "Collective Labour Supply and Welfare," DELTA Working Papers 89-07, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  14. Killingsworth, Mark R. & Heckman, James J., 1987. "Female labor supply: A survey," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 2, pages 103-204 Elsevier.
  15. Peracchi, Franco & Welch, Finis, 1994. "Trends in Labor Force Transitions of Older Men and Women," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(2), pages 210-42, April.
  16. Alan L. Gustman & Thomas L. Steinmeier, 1994. "Retirement in a Family Context: A Structural Model for Husbands and Wives," NBER Working Papers 4629, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. McElroy, Marjorie B & Horney, Mary Jean, 1981. "Nash-Bargained Household Decisions: Toward a Generalization of the Theory of Demand," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 22(2), pages 333-49, June.
  18. Gianna Claudia Giannelli, 1996. "Women`s transitions in the labour market: A competing risks analysis on German panel data," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 9(3), pages 287-300.
  19. Peter Kooreman & Arie Kapteyn, 1990. "On the Empirical Implementation of Some Game Theoretic Models of Household Labor Supply," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(4), pages 584-598.
  20. James H. Stock & David A. Wise, 1988. "Pensions, The Option Value of Work, and Retirement," NBER Working Papers 2686, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Marjorie B. McElroy, 1990. "The Empirical Content of Nash-Bargained Household Behavior," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(4), pages 559-583.
  22. Michael D. Hurd, 1988. "The Joint Retirement Decision of Husbands and Wives," NBER Working Papers 2803, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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