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Fertility Timing, Wages, and Human Capital

  • Blackburn, McKinley L
  • Bloom, David E
  • Neumark, David

Women who have first births relatively late in life earn higher wages. This paper offers an explanation of this fact based on a staple life-cycle model of human capital investment and timing of first birth. The model yields conditions (that are plausibly satisfied) under which late childbearers will tend to invest more heavily in human capital than early childbearers. The empirical analysis finds results consistent with the higher wages of late childbearers arising primarily through greater measurable human capital investment.

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Population Economics.

Volume (Year): 6 (1993)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 1-30

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:6:y:1993:i:1:p:1-30
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  1. Assaf Razin & Efraim Sadka, 1995. "Population Economics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262181606, June.
  2. Mary Corcoran & Greg J. Duncan & Michael Ponza, 1983. "A Longitudinal Analysis of White Women's Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 18(4), pages 497-520.
  3. Jacob Mincer & Solomon Polachek, 1974. "Family Investments in Human Capital: Earnings of Women," NBER Chapters, in: Marriage, Family, Human Capital, and Fertility, pages 76-110 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Cigno, Alessandro & Ermisch, John, 1989. "A microeconomic analysis of the timing of births," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 737-760, April.
  5. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
  6. Sandra Hofferth, 1984. "Long-term economic consequences for women of delayed childbearing and reduced family size," Demography, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 141-155, May.
  7. Sanders Korenman & David Neumark, 1992. "Marriage, Motherhood, and Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 27(2), pages 233-255.
  8. Polachek, Solomon William, 1975. "Differences in Expected Post-school Investments as a Determinant of Market Wage Differentials," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 16(2), pages 451-70, June.
  9. O'Neill, June, 1985. "The Trend in the Male-Female Wage Gap in the United States," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages S91-116, January.
  10. Lundberg, S. & Plotnick, R.D., 1989. "Teenage Childbearing And Adult Wages," Working Papers 90-24, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
  11. Becker, Gary S, 1985. "Human Capital, Effort, and the Sexual Division of Labor," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages S33-58, January.
  12. Jacob Mincer & Solomon Polacheck, 1974. "Family Investments in Human Capital: Earnings of Women," NBER Chapters, in: Economics of the Family: Marriage, Children, and Human Capital, pages 397-431 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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