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Family Ties and Labor Markets in the United States and Brazil


  • David Lam
  • Robert F. Schoeni


We use comparable surveys from Brazil and the United States to examine "vertical" and "horizontal" connections between families. Motivated by a model of assortative mating and intergenerational transmission of schooling and earnings, we include the schooling of relatives in male wage equations. We find that the effect of father-in-law's schooling is larger than the effect of father's schooling in Brazil, while the opposite is observed in the United States. We interpret these effects as indicators of unobservable worker characteristics, with differences in assortative mating and female labor market activity explaining the differences in the apparent effect of fathers and fathers-in-law in the two countries.

Suggested Citation

  • David Lam & Robert F. Schoeni, 1994. "Family Ties and Labor Markets in the United States and Brazil," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(4), pages 1235-1258.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:29:y:1994:4:1:p:1235-1258

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Newey, Whitney K & Powell, James L & Walker, James R, 1990. "Semiparametric Estimation of Selection Models: Some Empirical Results," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 324-328, May.
    2. Mark R. Rosenzweig & T. Paul Schultz, 1982. "The Behavior of Mothers as Inputs to Child Health: The Determinants of Birth Weight, Gestation, and Rate of Fetal Growth," NBER Chapters,in: Economic Aspects of Health, pages 53-92 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. repec:aph:ajpbhl:1983:73:10:1154-1156_8 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Hope Corman & Theodore J. Joyce & Michael Grossman, 1987. "Birth Outcome Production Function in the United States," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(3), pages 339-360.
    5. Jeffrey E. Harris, 1982. "Prenatal Medical Care and Infant Mortality," NBER Chapters,in: Economic Aspects of Health, pages 13-52 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Michael Grossman, 1972. "The Demand for Health: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gros72-1, January.
    7. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    8. Hope Corman & Theodore J. Joyce & Michael Grossman, 1985. "Birth Outcome Production Functions in the U.S," NBER Working Papers 1729, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Mroz, Thomas A, 1987. "The Sensitivity of an Empirical Model of Married Women's Hours of Work to Economic and Statistical Assumptions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(4), pages 765-799, July.
    10. repec:aph:ajpbhl:1979:69:7:653-660_0 is not listed on IDEAS
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