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Roadblocks on the Road to Grandma's House: Fertility Consequences of Delayed Retirement

Listed author(s):
  • Battistin, Erich

    ()

    (Queen Mary, University of London)

  • De Nadai, Michele

    ()

    (University of Padova)

  • Padula, Mario

    ()

    (Ca' Foscari University of Venice)

This paper investigates the role of childcare provided by grandparents for the fertility decisions of their offspring. We exploit a decade of pension reforms in Italy that mandated the grandparental generation to a working horizon longer than they would have had otherwise. We argue that the rise in retirement age meant a negative shock to the supply of informal childcare for the next generation. Our results show that one additional grandparent available in the early child-bearing years increases by about five percent the number of children. We show that the fertility effects of delayed retirement are limited to close-knits with a strong familistic structure. The result is not just the mechanical consequence of delayed exit from parental home, of more investment in education or of more attachment to the labour market. In light of the Italian lowest low fertility we conclude that pension reforms may have had unintended inter-generational effects. This conclusion is consistent with the sharp drop in total fertility documented by official statistics for the most conservative areas of the country.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 8071.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2014
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8071
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  1. Erich Battistin & Agar Brugiavini & Enrico Rettore & Guglielmo Weber, 2009. "The Retirement Consumption Puzzle: Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 2209-2226, December.
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  8. Bottazzi, Renata & Jappelli, Tullio & Padula, Mario, 2006. "Retirement expectations, pension reforms, and their impact on private wealth accumulation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(12), pages 2187-2212, December.
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  10. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio, 2002. "Private Transfers, Borrowing Constraints and the Timing of Homeownership," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 34(2), pages 315-339, May.
  11. Marcantonio Caltabiano & Maria Castiglioni & Alessandro Rosina, 2009. "Lowest-Low Fertility: Signs of a recovery in Italy?," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 21(23), pages 681-718, November.
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  15. Francesco C. Billari & Vincenzo Galasso, 2008. "What Explains Fertility? Evidence from Italian Pension Reforms," CSEF Working Papers 209, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  16. Eva Garcia-Moran & Zoe Kuehn, 2017. "With Strings Attached: Grandparent-Provided Child Care and Female Labor Market Outcomes," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 23, pages 80-98, January.
  17. Abadie, Alberto & Diamond, Alexis & Hainmueller, Jens, 2010. "Synthetic Control Methods for Comparative Case Studies: Estimating the Effect of California’s Tobacco Control Program," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 105(490), pages 493-505.
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  20. Daniela Del Boca & Daniela Vuri, 2007. "The mismatch between employment and child care in Italy: the impact of rationing," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 20(4), pages 805-832, October.
  21. Eva Garcia-Moran & Zoe Kuehn, 2012. "With Strings Attached: Grandparent-Provided Child care, Fertility, and Female Labor Market Outcomes," CEPRA working paper 1202, USI Università della Svizzera italiana.
  22. Emanuela Cardia & Serena Ng, 2003. "Intergenerational Time Transfers and Childcare," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(2), pages 431-454, April.
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