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Body-Weight and Women's Hours of Work: More Evidence That Marriage Markets Matter

Author

Listed:
  • Grossbard, Shoshana

    (San Diego State University)

  • Mukhopadhyay, Sankar

    (University of Nevada, Reno)

Abstract

Higher body-weight (BMI) can affect labor supply via its effects on outcomes in both labor markets and marriage markets. To the extent that it is associated with lower prospects of being in couple and obtaining intra-couple transfers, we expect that higher BMI will increase willingness to supply labor in labor markets, especially for women. We use US panel data from the NLSY79 and NLSY97 to examine whether body weight influences hours of work in the labor market. We use sibling BMI as an instrument for own BMI to address potential endogeneity of BMI in hours worked. We find that White women with higher BMI work more. This is true for both single and married White women. Results for other groups of women and men produce mixed results. The extended analysis suggests that what drives the relationship between BMI and hours worked is not lower market wages earned by high-BMI women, but rather lower spousal transfers to married women or lower expected intra-marriage transfers to single women.

Suggested Citation

  • Grossbard, Shoshana & Mukhopadhyay, Sankar, 2017. "Body-Weight and Women's Hours of Work: More Evidence That Marriage Markets Matter," IZA Discussion Papers 10775, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10775
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Body-Weight and Women’s Hours of Work: More Evidence That Marriage Markets Matter
      by maximorossi in NEP-LTV blog on 2017-06-20 19:34:53

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    1. Dang, Thang, 2017. "Body Weight and Hypertension Risk in a Developing Country," MPRA Paper 83182, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    marriage prospects; labor supply; obesity; intra-household division of resources;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure

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