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Maternal employment and overweight children

  • Patricia M. Anderson
  • Kristin F. Butcher
  • Phillip B. Levine

This paper seeks to determine whether a causal relationship exists between maternal employment and childhood overweight. We use matched mother/child data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth and employ econometric techniques to control for observable and unobservable differences across individuals and families that may influence both children's weight and their mothers' work patterns. Our results indicate that a child is more likely to be overweight if his/her mother worked more hours per week over the child's life. Analyses by subgroups show that it is higher socioeconomic status mothers whose work intensity is particularly deleterious for their children's overweight status.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in its series Working Paper Series with number WP-02-10.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedhwp:wp-02-10
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  1. Zvi Griliches & Jerry A. Hausman, 1984. "Errors in Variables in Panel Data," NBER Technical Working Papers 0037, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Susan Averett & Sanders Korenman, 1993. "The Economic Reality of the Beauty Myth," NBER Working Papers 4521, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Zimmerman, David J, 1992. "Regression toward Mediocrity in Economic Stature," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 409-29, June.
  4. John Cawley, 2000. "Body Weight and Women's Labor Market Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 7841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Hotz, V.J. & Kilburn, M.R., 1995. "Regulating Child Care: The Effetcs of State Regulation on Child Care Demand and its Cost," Papers 95-03, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
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