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Educational attainment and timing of fertility decisions

  • Juan Carlos Conesa

    (Universitat de Barcelona)

This paper focuses on timing of fertility decisions, conditional on the level of educational attainment of parents. Timing of fertility and educational attainment of parents rationalize the negative relationship observed in the data between hourly wages and childbearing. It is shown how the recent evolution in total fertility rates observed in developed countries could be in part the result of a transition from an early childbearing regime to a late childbearing regime. I develop a general equilibrium overlapping generations model in order to understand the joint determination of timing of childbearing decisions together with other household economic decisions in a life cycle framework. I show how idiosyncratic uncertainty might have asymmetric eects on completed fertility depending on timing of childbearing, generating the dierences in completed fertility observed between households that dier in their level of educational attainment.

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Paper provided by Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 78.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bar:bedcje:200278
Contact details of provider: Postal: Espai de Recerca en Economia, Facultat de Ciències Econòmiques. Tinent Coronel Valenzuela, Num 1-11 08034 Barcelona. Spain.
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  1. John Bongaarts, 1999. "Fertility Decline in the Developed World: Where Will It End?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 256-260, May.
  2. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1980. "Life-Cycle Labor Supply and Fertility: Causal Inferences from Household Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(2), pages 328-48, April.
  3. Browning, Martin, 1992. "Children and Household Economic Behavior," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1434-75, September.
  4. Pedro Mira & Namkee Ahn, 2002. "A note on the changing relationship between fertility and female employment rates in developed countries," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 15(4), pages 667-682.
  5. Hotz, V Joseph & Miller, Robert A, 1988. "An Empirical Analysis of Life Cycle Fertility and Female Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 91-118, January.
  6. Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1984. "An Estimable Dynamic Stochastic Model of Fertility and Child Mortality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(5), pages 852-74, October.
  7. Tauchen, George & Hussey, Robert, 1991. "Quadrature-Based Methods for Obtaining Approximate Solutions to Nonlinear Asset Pricing Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 371-96, March.
  8. R. Glenn Hubbard & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 1993. "The Importance of Precautionary Motives in Explaining Individual and Aggregate Saving," NBER Working Papers 4516, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Juan C. Conesa & Dirk Krueger, 1999. "Social Security Reform with Heterogeneous Agents," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(4), pages 757-795, October.
  10. Joseph Hotz, V. & Klerman, Jacob Alex & Willis, Robert J., 1993. "The economics of fertility in developed countries," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 275-347 Elsevier.
  11. Willis, Robert J, 1973. "A New Approach to the Economic Theory of Fertility Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages S14-64, Part II, .
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