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Why Are Married Men Working So Much? Home Production, Household Bargaining and Per-Capita Hours

  • Knowles, John

    ()

    (Simon Fraser University)

Empirical patterns of labor supply at the micro level tend to reject the unitary model assumption implicit in most macro theories, where households are the deemed to be rational agents. This paper examines the rise in per-capita labor since 1975 and asks how the inclusion of bargaining between spouses in a standard macro model would alter the analysis of recent trends in aggregate labor supply. The main findings are that the stationarity of married men’s work hours reflects weakening of men’s bargaining position as women’s wages rose, and that the unitary model seriously overstates the response of aggregate labor to trends in relative wages.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp2909.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2909.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Review of Economic Studies, 2013, 80 (3), 1055-1085
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2909
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  1. Browning, M. & Bourguignon, F. & Chiappori, P.A. & Lechene, V., 1992. "Incomes and Outcomes: A structural Model of Intra-Household Allocation," DELTA Working Papers 92-23, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  2. Chiappori, P.A., 1994. "Introducing Household Production in Collective Models of Labour Suply," DELTA Working Papers 94-18, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  3. Nezih Guner & Jeremy Greenwood, 2004. "Marriage and Divorce since World War II: Analyzing the Role of Technological Progress on the Formation of Households," 2004 Meeting Papers 65, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Hector Chade & Gustavo Ventura, 2002. "Taxes and Marriage: A Two-Sided Search Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(3), pages 955-986, August.
  5. Rupert, Peter & Rogerson, Richard & Wright, Randall, 1995. "Estimating Substitution Elasticities in Household Production Models," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 179-93, June.
  6. Mark Aguiar & Erik Hurst, 2006. "Measuring trends in leisure," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  7. Edward C. Prescott, 2003. "Why do Americans work so much more than Europeans?," Staff Report 321, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. McElroy, Marjorie B & Horney, Mary Jean, 1981. "Nash-Bargained Household Decisions: Toward a Generalization of the Theory of Demand," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 22(2), pages 333-49, June.
  9. Greenwood, J. & Guner, N. & Knkwles, J., 1999. "More on Marriage, Fertility, and the Distribution of Income," Papers 9904, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
  10. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2000. "Gender Differences in Pay," NBER Working Papers 7732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Greenwood,J. & Seshadri,A. & Yorukoglu,M., 2002. "Engines of liberation," Working papers 1, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  12. Manser, Marilyn & Brown, Murray, 1980. "Marriage and Household Decision-Making: A Bargaining Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 21(1), pages 31-44, February.
  13. Shelly Lundberg & Robert A. Pollak, 1996. "Bargaining and Distribution in Marriage," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(4), pages 139-158, Fall.
  14. Elizabeth M. Caucutt & Nezih Guner & John Knowles, 2002. "Why Do Women Wait? Matching, Wage Inequality, and the Incentives for Fertility Delay," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(4), pages 815-855, October.
  15. Chiappori, P.A. & Weiss, Y., 2000. "An Equilibrium Analysis of Divorce," Papers 00-18, Tel Aviv.
  16. Larry E. Jones & Rodolfo E. Manuelli & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2003. "Why are married women working so much?," Staff Report 317, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
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