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Fertility, Household Structure, and Parental Labor Supply: Evidence from Rural China

Author

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  • Li, Hongbin

    () (Stanford University)

  • Yi, Junjian

    () (National University of Singapore)

  • Zhang, Junsen

    () (Chinese University of Hong Kong)

Abstract

This paper tests the effects of fertility on household structure and parental labor supply in rural China. To solve the endogeneity problem, we use a unique survey on households with twin children and a comparison group of non-twin households. The ordinary least squares estimates show a negative correlation between fertility and parental labor supply. Using twinning as a natural experiment, we do not find evidence on the negative effects of fertility on parental labor supply. By contrast, we find that the twinning-induced increase in fertility enhances significantly the coresidence of grandparents. The results remain robust when we use the Chinese 1990 population census. We suggest that the negative effects of fertility on parental labor supply are mitigated by the childcare provided by grandparents. Our results have important implications for population and public childcare policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Li, Hongbin & Yi, Junjian & Zhang, Junsen, 2015. "Fertility, Household Structure, and Parental Labor Supply: Evidence from Rural China," IZA Discussion Papers 9342, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp9342
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Fu, Shihe & Viard, Brian & Zhang, Peng, 2017. "Air Quality and Manufacturing Firm Productivity: Comprehensive Evidence from China," MPRA Paper 78914, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Fei Wang & Liqiu Zhao & Zhong Zhao, 2017. "China’s family planning policies and their labor market consequences," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(1), pages 31-68, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    fertility; parental labor supply; household structure;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General

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