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Why Are Women Working so Much More in Canada? An International Perspective

  • Evridiki Tsounta
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    This paper analyzes the role of the tax and benefit system in spurring the impressive increase in Canadian female labor participation in the last decade. Using annual panel data for 10 large industrial countries over the period 1980-2001, I find that reforms in the Canadian tax and benefit system in the mid-1990s account for at least one-third of the observed increase in female participation in the period 1995-2001. The analysis indicates that policy initiatives similar to the "family-friendly" policies introduced in Canada could boost female participation in other countries and help policymakers meet the challenges of population aging.

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    Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 06/92.

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    Length: 37
    Date of creation: 01 Apr 2006
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:06/92
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    1. Edward C. Prescott, 2004. "Why Do Americans Work So Much More Than Europeans?," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000413, UCLA Department of Economics.
    2. Susan L. Averett & H. Elizabeth Peters & Donald M. Waldman, 1997. "Tax Credits, Labor Supply, And Child Care," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(1), pages 125-135, February.
    3. Pierre Lefebvre & Philip Merrigan, 2005. "Low-fee ($5/day/child) Regulated Childcare Policy and the Labor Supply of Mothers with Young Children: a Natural Experiment from Canada," Cahiers de recherche 0508, CIRPEE.
    4. Gordon Cleveland & Morley Gunderson & Douglas Hyatt, 1996. "Child Care Costs and the Employment Decision of Women: Canadian Evidence," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(1), pages 132-51, February.
    5. Jean Kimmel, 1998. "Child Care Costs As A Barrier To Employment For Single And Married Mothers," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(2), pages 287-299, May.
    6. Per-Anders Edin & Magnus Gustavsson, 2008. "Time out of Work and Skill Depreciation," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 61(2), pages 163-180, January.
    7. Genre, Véronique & Gómez-Salvador, Ramón & Lamo, Ana, 2005. "European women: Why do(n't) they work?," Working Paper Series 0454, European Central Bank.
    8. Bob Dugan & Benoît Robidoux, 1999. "Demographic Shifts and Labour Force Participation Rates in Canada," A Symposium on Canadian Labour Force Participation in the 1990s (Special Issue of Canadian Business Economics, Volume 7, Number 2, May 1999), in: Andrew Sharpe & Louis Grignon (ed.), A Symposium on Canadian Labour Force Participation in the 1990s (Special Issue of Canadian Business Economics, Volume 7, Number 2, May 1999), pages 42-56 Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
    9. David M. Blau & Alison P. Hagy, 1998. "The Demand for Quality in Child Care," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(1), pages 104-146, February.
    10. Nina Smith & Shirley Dex & Jan Dirk Vlasblom & Tim Callan, 2003. "The effects of taxation on married women's labour supply across four countries," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 55(3), pages 417-439, July.
    11. Sung-Hee Jeon, 2004. "The impacts of the 1988 tax reform on married women's labour supply in Canada," Department of Economics Working Papers 2004-19, McMaster University.
    12. Pencavel, John, 1987. "Labor supply of men: A survey," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 1, pages 3-102 Elsevier.
    13. Herwig Immervoll & David Barber, 2005. "Can Parents Afford to Work?: Childcare Costs, Tax-Benefit Policies and Work Incentives," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 31, OECD Publishing.
    14. Florence Jaumotte, 2003. "Female Labour Force Participation: Past Trends and Main Determinants in OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 376, OECD Publishing.
    15. Blau, Francine D. & Kahn, Lawrence M., 1999. "Institutions and laws in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 25, pages 1399-1461 Elsevier.
    16. Victor R. Fuchs & Alan B. Krueger & James M. Poterba, 1998. "Economists' Views about Parameters, Values, and Policies: Survey Results in Labor and Public Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1387-1425, September.
    17. Olivier Blanchard, 2004. "The Economic Future of Europe," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 3-26, Fall.
    18. Christopher J. Ruhm, 1998. "The Economic Consequences Of Parental Leave Mandates: Lessons From Europe," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(1), pages 285-317, February.
    19. Blau, David M & Robins, Philip K, 1988. "Child-Care Costs and Family Labor Supply," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(3), pages 374-81, August.
    20. Jan-Egbert Sturm & Bjørn Volkerink, 2003. "How to Measure the Tax Burden on Labour at the Macro-Level?," CESifo Working Paper Series 963, CESifo Group Munich.
    21. Julie L. Hotchkiss, 2005. "What’s up with the decline in female labor force participation?," Working Paper 2005-18, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
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