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Abortions, Inequality and Intergenerational Mobility: A Quantitative Evaluation

  • Georgi Kocharkov

    (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

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    In the last three decades over a million abortions are performed annually in the United States. Empirical studies such as Donohue and Levitt (2001) and Gruber, Levine and Staiger (1999) assess the impact of legalization of abortions on crime and living conditions of children. They argue that legalization of abortions provides better living conditions and human capital endowments to surviving children. This paper takes seriously the hypothesis that the improved living conditions of children due to legalized abortion will alter their labor market outcomes. The main question of the paper is what are the aggregate implications of abortions for income inequality and intergenerational transmission of income? A model of fertility, human capital transmission, contraception and abortion decisions is built to answer this question quantitatively.

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    Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2010 Meeting Papers with number 974.

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    Date of creation: 2010
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:red:sed010:974
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA
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    1. Sanders Korenman & David Neumark, 1992. "Marriage, Motherhood, and Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 27(2), pages 233-255.
    2. S. Rao Aiyagari & Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner, 2000. "On the State of the Union," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(2), pages 213-244, April.
    3. John Donohue & Steven Levitt, 2000. "The Impact of Legalized Abortion on Crime," NBER Working Papers 8004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    8. Fernandez, R. & Rogerson, R., 1999. "Sorting and Long-Run Inequality," Working Papers 99-22, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
    9. Pedro Mira & Jes�s M. Carro, 2006. "A dynamic model of contraceptive choice of Spanish couples," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(7), pages 955-980.
    10. Larry E. Jones & Alice Schoonbroodt & Michèle Tertilt, 2010. "Fertility Theories: Can They Explain the Negative Fertility-Income Relationship?," NBER Chapters, in: Demography and the Economy, pages 43-100 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Jonathan Gruber & Phillip Levine & Douglas Staiger, 1997. "Abortion Legalization and Child Living Circumstances: Who is the "Marginal Child?"," NBER Working Papers 6034, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Yoram Ben-Porath, 1967. "The Production of Human Capital and the Life Cycle of Earnings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 352.
    13. Mark Hugget & Gustavo Ventura & Amir Yaron, 2002. "Human Capital and Earnings Distribution Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 9366, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Jonathan Guryan & Erik Hurst & Melissa Kearney, 2008. "Parental Education and Parental Time with Children," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(3), pages 23-46, Summer.
    15. V. Joseph Hotz & Robert A. Miller, 1992. "Conditional Choice Probabilities and the Estimation of Dynamic Models," Working Papers 9202, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
    16. 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.
    17. Deborah J. Anderson & Melissa Binder & Kate Krause, 2002. "The Motherhood Wage Penalty: Which Mothers Pay It and Why?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 354-358, May.
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