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A Matter of Weight? Hours of Work of Married Men and Women and Their Relative Physical Attractiveness


  • Sonia Oreffice
  • Climent Quintana


We explore the role of relative physical attractiveness within the household on the labor supply decisions of husbands and wives. Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we find that husbands who are heavier relative to their wives work more hours, while wives who are thinner relative to their husbands work fewer hours. We also find a 9% -elasticity of annual hours of work with respect to own BMI for married men, and a -7%- elasticity with respect to wife's BMI. For married women, we find an 8% -elasticity of annual hours of work with respect to own BMI, and a -6%- elasticity with respect to husband's BMI. While own BMI is positively related to own hours of work for married individuals, no statistically significant relatioship emerges for eigher unmarried men or unmarried women.

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  • Sonia Oreffice & Climent Quintana, 2011. "A Matter of Weight? Hours of Work of Married Men and Women and Their Relative Physical Attractiveness," Working Papers 2011-05, FEDEA.
  • Handle: RePEc:fda:fdaddt:2011-05

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    1. Oreffice, Sonia & Quintana-Domeque, Climent, 2010. "Anthropometry and socioeconomics among couples: Evidence in the United States," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 373-384, December.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. The Cross-Weight Labour Supply Elasticity That Dare Not Speak Its Name
      by Eric Crampton in Offsetting Behaviour on 2011-03-30 23:00:00

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