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Fertility Effects of Child Benefits

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  • Regina T. Riphahn
  • Frederik Wiynck

Abstract

We exploit the 1996 reform of the German child benefit program to identify the causal effect of heterogeneous child benefits on fertility. While generally the reform increased child benefits, the exact amount of the increase varied by household income and the number of children. We use these heterogeneities to identify their causal effects on fertility in a difference-in-differences setting. We apply the large samples of the German Mikrozensus and the rich data of the German Socio-economic Panel (SOEP). The reform effects on low income couples are not statistically significant. We find some support for positive fertility effects for higher as opposed to lower income couples deciding on a second birth.

Suggested Citation

  • Regina T. Riphahn & Frederik Wiynck, 2017. "Fertility Effects of Child Benefits," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 896, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp896
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    Cited by:

    1. Libertad González & Sofia Trommlerová, 2020. "Cash Transfers and Fertility: How the Introduction and Cancellation of a Child Benefit Affected Births and Abortions," Working Papers 1153, Barcelona School of Economics.
    2. Mariani, R. D. & Rosati, F. C., 2021. "Immigrant Supply of Marketable Child Care and Native Fertility in Italy," GLO Discussion Paper Series 745, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    3. Janna Bergsvik & Agnes Fauske & Rannveig Kaldager Hart, 2021. "Can Policies Stall the Fertility Fall? A Systematic Review of the (Quasi‐) Experimental Literature," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 47(4), pages 913-964, December.
    4. Sonja Spitzer & Angela Greulich & Bernhard Hammer, 2018. "The Subjective Cost of Young Children: A European Comparison," VID Working Papers 1812, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna.
    5. González, Libertad & Trommlerová, Sofia, 2022. "Cash transfers before pregnancy and infant health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(C).
    6. Daniel Kamhoefer & Matthias Westphal, 2017. "Fertility Effects of College Education: Evidence from the German Educational Expansion," CINCH Working Paper Series 1705, Universitaet Duisburg-Essen, Competent in Competition and Health.
    7. Barbara Liberda & Katarzyna Sałach & Marek Pęczkowski, 2021. "The effects of child benefit on household saving," Working Papers 2021-02, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    8. Reader, Mary & Portes, Jonathan & Patrick, Ruth, 2022. "Does Cutting Child Benefits Reduce Fertility in Larger Families? Evidence from the UK’s Two-Child Limit," IZA Discussion Papers 15203, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    9. Tudor, Simona, 2020. "Financial incentives, fertility and early life child outcomes," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    10. Pinto,Maria Florencia & Posadas,Josefina & Shapira,Gil, 2021. "Financial Incentives, Fertility, and Son Preference in Armenia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9705, The World Bank.
    11. Choo, Dahae & Jales, Hugo, 2021. "Childbearing and the distribution of the reservation price of fertility: The case of the Korean baby bonus program," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(C).
    12. Iga Magda & Aneta Kielczewska & Nicola Brandt, 2018. "The “Family 500+” child allowance and female labour supply in Poland," IBS Working Papers 01/2018, Instytut Badan Strukturalnych.
    13. Sonja Spitzer & Angela Greulich & Bernhard Hammer, 2022. "The Subjective Cost of Young Children: A European Comparison," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 163(3), pages 1165-1189, October.
    14. Natalie Malak & Md Mahbubur Rahman & Terry A. Yip, 2019. "Baby bonus, anyone? Examining heterogeneous responses to a pro-natalist policy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 32(4), pages 1205-1246, October.
    15. Claudia Hupkau & Jenifer Ruiz-Valenzuela, 2022. "Work and children in Spain: challenges and opportunities for equality between men and women," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 13(1), pages 243-268, May.
    16. Raute, Anna, 2019. "Can financial incentives reduce the baby gap? Evidence from a reform in maternity leave benefits," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 169(C), pages 203-222.
    17. Elmallakh, Nelly, 2021. "Fertility, Family Policy, and Labor Supply: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from France," GLO Discussion Paper Series 984, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    18. Angela Greulich & Sonja Spitzer & Bernhard Hammer, 2022. "The Subjective Cost of Young Children: A European Comparison," Post-Print hal-03677151, HAL.
    19. Micaela Bassford & Hayley Fisher, 2020. "The Impact of Paid Parental Leave on Fertility Intentions," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 96(315), pages 402-430, December.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    child benefits; fertility; tax allowance; causal effect; difference-in-differences; Mikrozensus; SOEP;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • C54 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Quantitative Policy Modeling

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