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On the Importance of Fertility Behavior in School Finance Policy Design

  • Kuzey Yilmaz

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Rochester)

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    To design an optimal education policy, it is essential to account for the fertility differential between the poor and the rich because it affects the human capital investment through the child quantity-quality tradeoff of children. We develop a dynamic general equilibrium in which parents choose the quantity of children, transfer a preschool ability to their children, determine the quality of children by choosing private expenditures on basic education in addition to public expenditures on basic education, leave a bequest that could be used to finance college education. Moreover, there is an uncertainty in college completion depending on ability and endogenous wage determination based on the amount of schooling in the economy. It is very important to consider general equilibrium effects because the change in either fertility behavior or college outcomes as a result of policy changes leads to a large change in aggregate skill distribution. We find that ignoring fertility behavior, especially differential fertility substantially underestimates the role of credit constraints in the economy. We also analyze the impact of basic education subsidies and college subsidies on welfare, inequality, and intergenerational mobility. Strikingly, the choice between these two policies is found to be dependent on the magnitude of differential fertility rate.

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    File URL: http://eaf.ku.edu.tr/sites/eaf.ku.edu.tr/files/erf_wp_1403.pdf
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    Paper provided by Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum in its series Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers with number 1403.

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    Length: 24 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2014
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:koc:wpaper:1403
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    1. Eric A. Hanushek & Charles Ka Yui Leung & Kuzey Yilmaz, 2014. "Borrowing Constraints, College Aid, and Intergenerational Mobility," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(1), pages 1 - 41.
    2. Bernheim, B Douglas & Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H, 1985. "The Strategic Bequest Motive," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1045-76, December.
    3. Tauchen, George, 1986. "Finite state markov-chain approximations to univariate and vector autoregressions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 177-181.
    4. Hanushek, Eric & Yilmaz, Kuzey, 2007. "The complementarity of Tiebout and Alonso," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 243-261, June.
    5. Gary Solon, 2002. "Cross-Country Differences in Intergenerational Earnings Mobility," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 59-66, Summer.
    6. Kazumasa Oguro & Takashi Oshio & Junichiro Takahata, 2013. "Ability transmission, endogenous fertility and educational subsidy," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(17), pages 2469-2479, June.
    7. Caucutt, Elizabeth M. & Kumar, Krishna B., 2003. "Higher education subsidies and heterogeneity: a dynamic analysis," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(8), pages 1459-1502, June.
    8. Robert Haveman & Barbara Wolfe, 1995. "The Determinants of Children's Attainments: A Review of Methods and Findings," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1829-1878, December.
    9. Solon, Gary, 1992. "Intergenerational Income Mobility in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 393-408, June.
    10. John Fender & Ping Wang, 2001. "Educational Policy in a Credit Constrained Economy with Skill Heterogeneity," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0133, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
    11. Becker, Gary S & Barro, Robert J, 1988. "A Reformulation of the Economic Theory of Fertility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(1), pages 1-25, February.
    12. DE LA CROIX, David & DOEPKE, Matthias, . "Inequality and growth: why differential fertility matters," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1676, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    13. Cunha, Flavio & Heckman, James J. & Schennach, Susanne, 2010. "Estimating the Technology of Cognitive and Noncognitive Skill Formation," IZA Discussion Papers 4702, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Pedro Carneiro & James J. Heckman, 2002. "The Evidence on Credit Constraints in Post-Secondary Schooling," NBER Working Papers 9055, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Willis, Robert J, 1973. "A New Approach to the Economic Theory of Fertility Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages S14-64, Part II, .
    16. Casey B. Mulligan, 1999. "Galton versus the Human Capital Approach to Inheritance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(S6), pages S184-S224, December.
    17. Maria E. Canon, 2010. "The role of schools in the production of achievement," Working Papers 2010-042, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    18. B. Douglas Bernheim & Sergei Severinov, 2003. "Bequests as Signals: An Explanation for the Equal Division Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(4), pages 733-764, August.
    19. Garratt, Rod & Marshall, John M, 1994. "Public Finance of Private Goods: The Case of College Education," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(3), pages 566-82, June.
    20. Diego Restuccia & Carlos Urrutia, 2004. "Intergenerational Persistence of Earnings: The Role of Early and College Education," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1354-1378, December.
    21. Becker, Gary S & Lewis, H Gregg, 1973. "On the Interaction between the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages S279-88, Part II, .
    22. Galor, Oded & Zang, Hyoungsoo, 1997. "Fertility, income distribution, and economic growth: Theory and cross-country evidence," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 197-229, May.
    23. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1979. "An Equilibrium Theory of the Distribution of Income and Intergenerational Mobility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1153-89, December.
    24. Eric Hanushek & Charles Ka Yui Leung & Kuzey Yilmaz, 2001. "Redistribution through Education and Other Transfer Mechanisms," NBER Working Papers 8588, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Janet Currie & Duncan Thomas, 1999. "Early Test Scores, Socioeconomic Status and Future Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 6943, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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