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My Baby Takes the Morning Train: Gender Identity, Fairness, and Relative Labor Supply Within Households


  • Lepinteur, Anthony

    () (Paris School of Economics)

  • Flèche, Sarah

    () (CEP, London School of Economics)

  • Powdthavee, Nattavudh

    () (University of Warwick)


The current study argues that women's decision to leave the labor force at the point where their income exceeds their husbands' income may have less to do with gender identity norm (Bertrand et al., 2015) and more to do with what women think is a fair distribution of relative working hours within the household. Using three nationally-representative data, we show that life satisfaction is significantly lower among women whose work hours exceed their partners, holding the share of wife's income constant. Men, by contrast, are not affected by working longer or fewer hours than their wives.

Suggested Citation

  • Lepinteur, Anthony & Flèche, Sarah & Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2016. "My Baby Takes the Morning Train: Gender Identity, Fairness, and Relative Labor Supply Within Households," IZA Discussion Papers 10382, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10382

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lídia Farré & Francis Vella, 2013. "The Intergenerational Transmission of Gender Role Attitudes and its Implications for Female Labour Force Participation," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 80(318), pages 219-247, April.
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    5. Marianne Bertrand & Emir Kamenica & Jessica Pan, 2015. "Gender Identity and Relative Income within Households," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 130(2), pages 571-614.
    6. Alison L. Booth & Jan C. Van Ours, 2009. "Hours of Work and Gender Identity: Does Part-time Work Make the Family Happier?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 76(301), pages 176-196, February.
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    More about this item


    fairness; gender identity; life satisfaction; relative income; working hours; labor supply;

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

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