Child Care Costs and the Employment Status of Married Australian Mothers
Using data from the HILDA (Household Income and Labour Dynamics), this paper examines the implications of child care costs on maternal employment status by distinguishing between full-time and part-time work. Our empirical approach uses an ordered probit model taking into account the endogeneity associated with both wages and child care costs. Results indicate that child care costs have a statistically insignificant effect on the decision to work either full time or part time. Moreover, the reported elasticities of part-time and full-time work with respect to child care costs are relatively low. This suggests that the significant subsidies paid to users of child care may have a limited role in increasing the labour market activity of married mothers.
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