IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

For richer or for poorer: Marriage as an antipoverty strategy

  • Adam Thomas

    (The Brookings Institution, Washington, DC)

  • Isabel Sawhill

    (The Brookings Institution, Washington, DC)

Registered author(s):

    This study examines the effects of changes in family structure on children's economic well-being. An initial shift-share analysis indicates that, had the proportion of children living in female-headed families remained constant since 1970, the 1998 child poverty rate would have been 4.4 percentage points lower than its actual 1998 level of 18.3 percent. The March 1999 Current Population Survey is then used to conduct a second analysis in which marriages are simulated between single mothers and demographically similar, unrelated males. The microsimulation analysis addresses some of the shortcomings of the shift-share approach by making it possible to account for the possibility of a shortage of marriageable men, to control for unobservable differences between married men and women and their unmarried counterparts, and to measure directly the effects of increases in marriage on the economic well-being of children. Results from the microsimulation analysis suggest that, had the proportion of children living in female-headed families remained constant since 1970, the child poverty rate would have been 3.4 percentage points lower than its actual 1998 level. Among children whose mother participated in a simulated marriage, the poverty rate would have fallen by almost two-thirds. © 2002 by the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/pam.10075
    File Function: Link to full text; subscription required
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

    Volume (Year): 21 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 587-599

    as
    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:21:y:2002:i:4:p:587-599
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/34787/home

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Ellwood, David T & Crane, Jonathan, 1990. "Family Change among Black Americans: What Do We Know?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 65-84, Fall.
    2. Blackburn, McKinley & Korenman, Sanders, 1994. "The Declining Marital-Status Earnings Differential," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 247-70, July.
    3. Lerman, Robert I, 1996. "The Impact of the Changing US Family Structure on Child Poverty and Income Inequality," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 63(250), pages S119-39, Suppl..
    4. Chun, Hyunbae & Lee, Injae, 2001. "Why Do Married Men Earn More: Productivity or Marriage Selection?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 39(2), pages 307-19, April.
    5. Cornwell, Christopher & Rupert, Peter, 1997. "Unobservable Individual Effects, Marriage and the Earnings of Young Men," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(2), pages 285-94, April.
    6. Lerman, Robert I, 1989. "Employment Opportunities of Young Men and Family Formation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(2), pages 62-66, May.
    7. Robert A. Nakosteen & Michael A. Zimmer, 1987. "Marital Status and Earnings of Young Men: A Model with Endogenous Selection," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(2), pages 248-268.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:21:y:2002:i:4:p:587-599. 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: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing)

    or (Christopher F. Baum)

    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.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with 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 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.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.