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Abortions and Inequality

Author

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  • Georgi Kocharkov

    () (Department of Economics, University of Konstanz, Germany)

Abstract

In the last three decades over a million abortions were performed annually in the United States. Recent empirical studies assess the impact of legalization of abortions on living conditions of children and argue that legalization of abortions provides better living conditions and human capital endowments to surviving children. This paper takes seriously the hypothesis that legalized abortion can improve the living conditions of children and hence alter their future labor market outcomes. The main question of the paper is what are the implications of abortions for long-term income inequality. A model of marriage, fertility, human capital transmission, contraception and abortion decisions is built to answer this question quantitatively. Inequality will be higher in a world without abortions. The main reason for this is the higher and more unequally distributed number of children across households. Children also receive less human capital.

Suggested Citation

  • Georgi Kocharkov, 2012. "Abortions and Inequality," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2012-22, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
  • Handle: RePEc:knz:dpteco:1222
    as

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    File URL: http://www.uni-konstanz.de/FuF/wiwi/workingpaperseries/WP_Kocharkov_22_12.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Fertility; Abortions; Contraception; Income Inequality; Family Formation; Intergenerational Mobility;

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J17 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Value of Life; Foregone Income
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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