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Why Do Women Wait? Matching, Wage Inequality, and the Incentives for Fertility Delay

Author

Listed:
  • Elizabeth M. Caucutt

    (University of Rochester)

  • Nezih Guner

    (Pennsylvania State University)

  • John Knowles

    (University of Pennsylvania)

Abstract

This paper explores the interaction between wage inequality and the marriage and fertility decisions of young women. We develop an equilibrium search model of marriage, divorce, and investment in children that allows for differential timing of fertility. We show how patterns of fertility timing in U.S. data can be explained by the incentives for fertility delay implied by marriage and labor markets. We find that these incentives help explain both the cross-sectional relationship between women's wages and fertility timing and the changes over the past 40 years in married women's fertility timing and labor supply. (Copyright: Elsevier)

Suggested Citation

  • Elizabeth M. Caucutt & Nezih Guner & John Knowles, 2002. "Why Do Women Wait? Matching, Wage Inequality, and the Incentives for Fertility Delay," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(4), pages 815-855, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:issued:v:5:y:2002:i:4:p:815-855
    DOI: 10.1006/redy.2002.0190
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Sumru Altuğ & Robert A. Miller, 1998. "The Effect of Work Experience on Female Wages and Labour Supply," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(1), pages 45-85.
    2. Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner & John A. Knowles, 2003. "More on Marriage, Fertility, and the Distribution of Income," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(3), pages 827-862, August.
    3. Hotz, V Joseph & Miller, Robert A, 1988. "An Empirical Analysis of Life Cycle Fertility and Female Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 91-118, January.
    4. Gunderson, Morley, 1989. "Male-Female Wage Differentials and Policy Responses," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(1), pages 46-72, March.
    5. Zvi Eckstein & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 1989. "Dynamic Labour Force Participation of Married Women and Endogenous Work Experience," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(3), pages 375-390.
    6. Browning, Martin, 1992. "Children and Household Economic Behavior," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1434-1475, September.
    7. Lee Lillard & Linda Waite, 1993. "A joint model of marital childbearing and marital disruption," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 30(4), pages 653-681, November.
    8. Juan Carlos Conesa, 2002. "Educational attainment and timing of fertility decisions," Working Papers in Economics 78, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
    9. Rubalcava, L. & Thomas, D., 2000. "Family Bargaining and Welfare," Papers 00-10, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
    10. Becker, Gary S, 1974. "A Theory of Marriage: Part II," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages 11-26, Part II, .
    11. Joseph Hotz, V. & Klerman, Jacob Alex & Willis, Robert J., 1993. "The economics of fertility in developed countries," Handbook of Population and Family Economics,in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 275-347 Elsevier.
    12. Moffitt, Robert, 1984. "The Estimation of a Joint Wage-Hours Labor Supply Model," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(4), pages 550-566, October.
    13. Andres Erosa & Luisa Fuster & Diego Restuccia, 2002. "Fertility Decisions and Gender Differences in Labor Turnover, Employment, and Wages," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(4), pages 856-891, October.
    14. Chiappori, Pierre-André & Fortin, Bernard & Lacroix, Guy, 1998. "Household Labor Supply, Sharing Rule and the Marriage Market," Cahiers de recherche 9810, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    marriage; fertility; returns to experience;

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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