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Fatter Attraction: Anthropometric and Socioeconomic Matching on the Marriage Market

  • Pierre-Andre Chiappori

    ()

    (Columbia University - Department of Economics)

  • Sonia Oreffice

    ()

    (Universitat d.Alacant and IZA - Department of Economics)

  • Climent Quintana-Domeque

    ()

    (Universitat d.Alacant - Department of Economics)

We construct a matching model on the marriage market along more than one characteristic, where individuals have preferences over physical attractiveness and socioeconomic characteristics that can be summarized by a one-dimensional index combining these various attributes. We show that under a (testable) separability assumption, the indices are ordinally identified. We estimate the model using data from the PSID. Our separability tests do not reject. We find that among men, a 10% increase in BMI can be compensated by a higher wage of around 3%. Similarly, for women, an additional year of education may compensate up to three BMI units.

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Paper provided by Columbia University, Department of Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 1011-06.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:clu:wpaper:1011-06
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  1. Shimer, R. & Smith, L., 1998. "Assortive Matching and Search," Papers 98-09, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
  2. Wong, Linda, 2001. "Structural Estimation of Marriage Models," 10th International Conference on Panel Data, Berlin, July 5-6, 2002 A1-1, International Conferences on Panel Data.
  3. Chiappori, Pierre-André & Iyigun, Murat & Weiss, Yoram, 2006. "Investment in Schooling and the Marriage Market," IZA Discussion Papers 2454, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Galichon, Alfred & Salanié, Bernard, 2010. "Matching with Trade-offs: Revealed Preferences over Competing Characteristics," CEPR Discussion Papers 7858, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. John Cawley, 2000. "Body Weight and Women's Labor Market Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 7841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Euna Han & Edward C. Norton & Sally C. Stearns, 2009. "Weight and wages: fat versus lean paychecks," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(5), pages 535-548.
  7. Climent Quintana Domeque & Sonia Oreffice, 2010. "Anthropometry and socioeconomics in the couple: evidence from the PSID," Working Papers. Serie AD 2010-16, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  8. Patrick Legros & Andrew F. Newman, 2007. "Beauty Is a Beast, Frog Is a Prince: Assortative Matching with Nontransferabilities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(4), pages 1073-1102, 07.
  9. Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo & Maitreesh Ghatak & Jeanne Lafortune, 2009. "Marry for What: Caste and Mate Selection in Modern India," NBER Working Papers 14958, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Christian A. Gregory & Christopher J. Ruhm, 2011. "Where Does the Wage Penalty Bite?," NBER Chapters, in: Economic Aspects of Obesity, pages 315-347 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Lundborg, Petter & Nystedt, Paul & Rooth, Dan-Olof, 2009. "The Height Premium in Earnings: The Role of Physical Capacity and Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Skills," IZA Discussion Papers 4266, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. John Cawley, 2004. "The Impact of Obesity on Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
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