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Child Labor and the Interaction between the Quantity and Quality of Children

  • C. Simon Fan

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Lingnan University, Tuen Mun, Hong Kong)

This article analyzes the impacts of child labor on the interaction between the quantity and quality of children in the spirit of Becker and Lewis. It shows that, without child labor, the quantity of children can be a normal good so that it increases with parental income under some fairly standard formulations. However, the correlation between fertility and parental income becomes negative when the role of child labor is considered. The model also implies that fertility increases with the wage rate of child labor. Moreover, it suggests that government intervention not only directly affects the supply of child labor but also influences parents' decisions on fertility, which indirectly determines children's labor market participations.

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Article provided by Southern Economic Association in its journal Southern Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 71 (2004)
Issue (Month): 1 (July)
Pages: 21-35

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Handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:71:1:y:2004:p:21-35
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.southerneconomic.org/

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  1. Oded Galor & David N. Weil, 1993. "The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth," NBER Working Papers 4550, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Ranjan, P., 1999. ""Credit Constraints and the Phenomenon of Child Labor"," Papers 98-99-12, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  3. Daron Acemoglu & Joshua Angrist, 1999. "How Large are the Social Returns to Education? Evidence from Compulsory Schooling Laws," Working papers 99-30, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Barro, Robert J & Becker, Gary S, 1989. "Fertility Choice in a Model of Economic Growth," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 481-501, March.
  5. Jie Zhang & Junsen Zhang, 1997. "Fertility and Wage Rates in an Overlapping-Generations Model," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 30(1), pages 224-34, February.
  6. Galor, Oded & Zeira, Joseph, 1993. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(1), pages 35-52, January.
  7. Basu, Kaushik & Van, Pham Hoang, 1998. "The Economics of Child Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 412-27, June.
  8. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 2000. "Natural Selection and the Origin of economic Growth," Working Papers 2000-18, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  9. William Parish & Robert J. Willis, . "Daughters, Education and Family Budgets: Taiwan Experiences," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 92-8a, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  10. Basu, Kaushik, 1999. "The intriguing relation between adult minimum wage and child labor," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2173, The World Bank.
  11. Kaushik Basu, 1999. "Child Labor: Cause, Consequence, and Cure, with Remarks on International Labor Standards," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1083-1119, September.
  12. Lleras-Muney, Adriana, 2002. "Were Compulsory Attendance and Child Labor Laws Effective? An Analysis from 1915 to 1939," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(2), pages 401-35, October.
  13. Becker, Gary S & Lewis, H Gregg, 1973. "On the Interaction between the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages S279-88, Part II, .
  14. David N. Weil & Oded Galor, 2000. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 806-828, September.
  15. Bardhan, Pranab & Udry, Christopher, 1999. "Development Microeconomics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198773719, March.
  16. Jean-Marie Baland & James A. Robinson, 2000. "Is Child Labor Inefficient?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 663-679, August.
  17. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Evenson, Robert E, 1977. "Fertility, Schooling, and the Economic Contribution of Children in Rural India: An Econometric Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(5), pages 1065-79, July.
  18. Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1977. "The Demand for Children in Farm Households," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 123-46, February.
  19. Assaf Razin & Efraim Sadka, 1995. "Population Economics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262181606, June.
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