IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Bayesian analysis of an econometric model of birth inputs and outputs


  • Kai Li


  • Dale J. Poirier



This study offers a simultaneous equations model of the birth process with seven endogenous variables: four birth inputs (maternal smoking, maternal drinking, first trimester prenatal care, and maternal weight gain) and three birth outputs (gestational age, birth length, and birth weight). The data are taken from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Our analysis conditions on twenty-nine exogenous variables including four racial dummies to account for the widely cited racial differences in birth outputs. We find that there is sizeable correlation between the disturbances in the four input and three output equations and among output disturbances, and that results from our simultaneous equations model are substantially different from those using the single-equation approach. It appears that the High/Low Risk Birth Weight Puzzle remains unresolved under our modeling framework. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2003

Suggested Citation

  • Kai Li & Dale J. Poirier, 2003. "Bayesian analysis of an econometric model of birth inputs and outputs," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 16(3), pages 597-625, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:16:y:2003:i:3:p:597-625
    DOI: 10.1007/s00148-003-0152-3

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

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

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Djajic, Slobodan, 1987. "Illegal aliens, unemployment and immigration policy," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 235-249, February.
    2. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters,in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1986. "Illegal Immigration: The Host-Country Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 56-71, March.
    4. George J. Borjas & Richard B. Freeman & Lawrence F. Katz, 1992. "On the Labor Market Effects of Immigration and Trade," NBER Chapters,in: Immigration and the Workforce: Economic Consequences for the United States and Source Areas, pages 213-244 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Bond, Eric W. & Chen, Tain-Jy, 1987. "The welfare effects of illegal immigration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3-4), pages 315-328, November.
    6. Campos, Jose Edgardo L & Lien, Donald, 1995. "Political Instability and Illegal Immigration," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 8(1), pages 23-33, February.
    7. Randall Filer, 1992. "The Effect of Immigrant Arrivals on Migratory Patterns of Native Workers," NBER Chapters,in: Immigration and the Workforce: Economic Consequences for the United States and Source Areas, pages 245-270 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. John M. Abowd & Richard B. Freeman, 1991. "Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number abow91-1, January.
    9. Polinsky, Mitchell & Shavell, Steven, 1979. "The Optimal Tradeoff between the Probability and Magnitude of Fines," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(5), pages 880-891, December.
    10. George J. Borjas, 1994. "The Economics of Immigration," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1667-1717, December.
    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. Ana I. Balsa & Patricia Triunfo, 2012. "The Effectiveness of Prenatal Care in a Low Income Population: A Panel Data Approach," Documentos de Trabajo/Working Papers 1204, Facultad de Ciencias Empresariales y Economia. Universidad de Montevideo..
    2. Habibov, Nazim N. & Fan, Lida, 2011. "Does prenatal healthcare improve child birthweight outcomes in Azerbaijan? Results of the national Demographic and Health Survey," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 56-65, January.
    3. Hope Corman & Dhaval M. Dave & Nancy E. Reichman, 2017. "Evolution of the Infant Health Production Function," NBER Working Papers 24131, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Li, Mingliang & Tobias, Justin, 2005. "Bayesian Analysis of Structural Effects in an Ordered Equation System," Staff General Research Papers Archive 12247, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    5. Todd Jewell & Patricia Triunfo & Rafael Aguirre, 2004. "Impacto de los cuidados Prenatales en el Peso al Nacer: El Caso del Uruguay," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0704, Department of Economics - dECON.
    6. Ana Inés Balsa & Patricia Triunfo, 2012. "¿Son los cuidados prenatales efectivos? Un enfoque con datos individuales de panel," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0612, Department of Economics - dECON.
    7. R. Todd Jewell & Patricia Triunfo, 2006. "Bajo peso al nacer en Uruguay: implicaciones para las políticas de salud," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 1706, Department of Economics - dECON.

    More about this item


    Birth weight; NLSY; simultaneity; I12; J13; C11;

    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General


    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:spr:jopoec:v:16:y:2003:i:3:p:597-625. 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: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). 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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.