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Labor Supply Heterogeneity and Demand for Child Care of Mothers with Young Children

  • Patricia Apps
  • Jan Kabátek
  • Ray Rees
  • Arthur van Soest

This paper introduces a static structural model of hours of market labor supply, time spent on child care and other domestic work, and bought in child care for married or cohabiting mothers with pre-school age children. The father's behavior is taken as given. The main goal is to analyze the sensitivity of hours of market work, parental child care, other household production and formal child care to the wage rate, the price of child care, taxes, benefits and child care subsidies. To account for the non-convex nature of the budget sets and, possibly, the household technology, a discrete choice model is used. The model is estimated using the HILDA dataset, a rich household survey of the Australian population, which contains detailed information on time use, child care demands and the corresponding prices. Simulations based on the estimates show that the time allocations of women with pre-school children are highly sensitive to changes in wages and the costs of child care. A policy simulation suggests that labor force participation and hours of market work would increase substantially in a fiscal system based solely on individual rather than joint taxation.

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File URL: http://cbe.anu.edu.au/researchpapers/cepr/DP677.pdf
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Paper provided by Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 677.

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Date of creation: Dec 2012
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Handle: RePEc:auu:dpaper:677
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  1. Donald, Stephen G. & Hamermesh, Daniel S., 2009. "A structural model of the fixed time costs of market work," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 104(3), pages 125-128, September.
  2. Xiaodong Gong & Robert Breunig & Anthony King, 2011. "Partnered women's labour supply and child care costs in Australia: Measurement error and the child care price," NATSEM Working Paper Series 11/13, University of Canberra, National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling.
  3. M. Keane & R. Moffitt, . "A structural model of multiple welfare program participation and labor supply," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1080-96, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  4. Xiaodong Gong & Robert Breunig, 2012. "Estimating net chid care price elasticities of partnered women with pre-school children using a discrete structural labour supply-child care model," Treasury Working Papers 2012-01, The Treasury, Australian Government, revised Nov 2012.
  5. Richard Blundell & Amanda Gosling & Hidehiko Ichimura & Costas Meghir, 2007. "Changes in the Distribution of Male and Female Wages Accounting for Employment Composition Using Bounds," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(2), pages 323-363, 03.
  6. van Soest, Arthur & Das, Marcel & Gong, Xiaodong, 2002. "A structural labour supply model with flexible preferences," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 107(1-2), pages 345-374, March.
  7. Michael Baker & Jonathan Gruber & Kevin Milligan, 2008. "Universal Child Care, Maternal Labor Supply, and Family Well-Being," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(4), pages 709-745, 08.
  8. Richard Blundell & Andrew Shephard, 2011. "Employment, Hours of Work and the Optimal Taxation of Low Income Families," Working Papers 1307, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
  9. Alesina, Alberto F & Ichino, Andrea & Karabarbounis, Loukas, 2007. "Gender Based Taxation and the Division of Family Chores," CEPR Discussion Papers 6591, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Tom Kornstad & Thor O. Thoresen, 2002. "A Discrete Choice Model for Labor Supply and Child Care," Discussion Papers 315, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  11. van Soest, Arthur & Stancanelli, Elena G. F., 2010. "Does Income Taxation Affect Partners' Household Chores?," IZA Discussion Papers 5038, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Rachel Connelly & Jean Kimmel, 2003. "Marital status and full-time/part-time work status in child care choices," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(7), pages 761-777.
  13. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521716284 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Arthur van Soest, 1995. "Structural Models of Family Labor Supply: A Discrete Choice Approach," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(1), pages 63-88.
  15. Martin Burda & Matthew Harding & Jerry Hausman, 2008. "A Bayesian mixed logit-probit model for multinomial choice," CeMMAP working papers CWP23/08, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  16. Paul A. Ruud., 1988. "Extensions of Estimation Methods Using the EM Algorithm.," Economics Working Papers 8899, University of California at Berkeley.
  17. Xiaodong Gong & Robert Breuing, 2011. "Estimating Net Child Care Price Elasticities of Partnered Women With Pre-School Children Using a Discrete Structural Labour Supply-Child Care Model," CEPR Discussion Papers 653, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  18. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521766555 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Alan Duncan & Gillian Paull & Jayne Taylor, 2001. "Mothers' employment and the use of childcare in the UK," IFS Working Papers W01/23, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  20. Connelly, Rachel, 1992. "The Effect of Child Care Costs on Married Women's Labor Force Participation," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(1), pages 83-90, February.
  21. Denise Doiron & Guyonne Kalb, 2005. "Demands for Child Care and Household Labour Supply in Australia," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 81(254), pages 215-236, 09.
  22. Ribar, D.C., 1993. "A Structural Model of Child Care and the Labor Supply of Married Women," Papers 5-93-1, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  23. Jean Kimmel & Rachel Connelly, 2007. "Mothers’ Time Choices: Caregiving, Leisure, Home Production, and Paid Work," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(3).
  24. Pacifico, Daniele, 2009. "Modelling Unobserved Heterogeneity in Discrete Choice Models of Labour Supply," MPRA Paper 19030, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  25. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521747387 is not listed on IDEAS
  26. Charlene M. Kalenkoski & David C. Ribar & Leslie S. Stratton, 2005. "Parental Child Care in Single-Parent, Cohabiting, and Married-Couple Families: Time-Diary Evidence from the United Kingdom," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 194-198, May.
  27. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521887878 is not listed on IDEAS
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