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Changes in the Wage Structure, Family Income, and Children's Education

  • Daron Acemoglu
  • Jorn-Steffen Pischke

We exploit the changes in the distribution of family income to estimate the effect of parental resources on college education. Our strategy exploits the fact that families at the bottom of the income distribution were much poorer in the 1990s than they were in the 1970s, while the opposite is true for families in the top quartile of the distribution. Our estimates suggest large effects of family income on enrollments. For example, we find that a 10 percent increase in family income is associated with a 1.4 percent increase in the probability of attending a four-year college.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w7986.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 7986.

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Date of creation: Oct 2000
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Publication status: published as Acemoglu, Daron and J. S. Pischke. "Changes In The Wage Structure, Family Income, And Children's Education," European Economic Review, 2001, v45(4-6,May), 890-904.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7986
Note: CH LS
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  1. Gary S. Becker & Nigel Tomes, 1994. "Human Capital and the Rise and Fall of Families," NBER Chapters, in: Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with Special Reference to Education (3rd Edition), pages 257-298 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Benabou, Roland, 1996. "Heterogeneity, Stratification, and Growth: Macroeconomic Implications of Community Structure and School Finance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 584-609, June.
  3. Oded Galor & Joseph Zeira, 2013. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Working Papers 2013-12, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  4. Acemoglu, Daron, 1996. "Matching, Heterogeneity and the Evolution of Income Distribution," CEPR Discussion Papers 1345, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Daron Acemoglu & Joern-Steffen Pischke, 1998. "Beyond Becker: Training in Imperfect Labor Markets," Working papers 98-12, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  6. Stephen Cameron & Christopher Taber, 2000. "Borrowing Constraints and the Returns to Schooling," NBER Working Papers 7761, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Lang, Kevin & Ruud, Paul A, 1986. "Returns to Schooling, Implicit Discount Rates and Black-White Wage Differentials," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(1), pages 41-47, February.
  8. John Shea, 1997. "Does Parents' Money Matter?," NBER Working Papers 6026, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Fernandez, Raquel & Rogerson, Richard, 1996. "Income Distribution, Communities, and the Quality of Public Education," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(1), pages 135-64, February.
  10. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-42, June.
  11. 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.
  12. Steven N. Durlauf, 1992. "A Theory of Persistent Income Inequality," NBER Working Papers 4056, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Stephen V. Cameron & James J. Heckman, 1999. "The Dynamics of Educational Attainment for Blacks, Hispanics, and Whites," NBER Working Papers 7249, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Venti, Steven F, 1984. "The Effects of Income Maintenance on Work, Schooling, and Non-Market Activities of Youth," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 66(1), pages 16-25, February.
  15. Robert H. Topel, 1997. "Factor Proportions and Relative Wages: The Supply-Side Determinants of Wage Inequality," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 55-74, Spring.
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