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Baby Busts and Baby Booms: The Fertility Response to Shocks in Dynastic Models

  • Larry E. Jones
  • Alice Schoonbroodt

Economic demographers have long analyzed fertility cycles. This paper builds a foundation for these cycles in a model of fertility choice with dynastic altruism and aggregate shocks. It is shown that under reasonable parameter values, fertility is pro-cyclical and that, following a shock, fertility continues to cycle endogenously as subsequent cohorts enter retirement. Quantitatively, in the model, the Great Depression generates a large baby bust -- between 38% and 63% of that seen in the U.S. in the 1930s -- which is subsequently followed by a baby boom -- between 53% and 92% of that seen in the U.S. in the 1950s.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w16596.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16596.

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Date of creation: Dec 2010
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16596
Note: EFG
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  1. Matthias Doepke & Moshe Hazan & Yishay D. Maoz, 2008. "The Baby Boom and World War II: A Macroeconomic Analysis," IEW - Working Papers 355, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  2. Larry E. Jones & Alice Schoonbroodt, 2007. "Complements versus Substitutes and Trends in Fertility Choice in Dynastic Models," NBER Working Papers 13680, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Michael R. Haines, 1994. "The Population of the United States, 1790-1920," NBER Historical Working Papers 0056, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Schoonbroodt, Alice & Tertilt, Michèle, 2014. "Property rights and efficiency in OLG models with endogenous fertility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 551-582.
  5. Jeremy Greenwood & Ananth Seshadri & Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2005. "The Baby Boom and Baby Bust," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 183-207, March.
  6. Diane J. Macunovich, 1998. "Fertility and the Easterlin hypothesis: An assessment of the literature," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 53-111.
  7. Albanesi, Stefania & Olivetti, Claudia, 2010. "Maternal Health and the Baby Boom," CEPR Discussion Papers 7925, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Cette, G. & Kocoglu, Y. & Mairesse, J., 2010. "Productivity Growth and Levels in France, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States in the Twentieth Century," Working papers 271, Banque de France.
  9. Rodolfo E. Manuelli & Ananth Seshadri, 2009. "Explaining International Fertility Differences," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 124(2), pages 771-807, May.
  10. JohnKarl Scholz & Ananth Seshadri, 2007. "Children and Household Wealth," Working Papers wp158, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  11. 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.
  12. repec:fth:sotoec:0031 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Xavier Mateos-Planas, 2002. "The Demographic Transition in Europe: A Neoclassical Dynastic Approach," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(3), pages 646-680, July.
  14. Huggett, Mark, 1996. "Wealth distribution in life-cycle economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 469-494, December.
  15. Andolfatto, David & Gervais, Martin, 2008. "Endogenous debt constraints in a life-cycle model with an application to social security," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(12), pages 3745-3759, December.
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