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Maternal Stress and Offspring Lifelong Labor Market Outcomes

Author

Listed:
  • Vincenzo Atella

    (Università di Roma Tor Vergata and CHP Stanford University)

  • Edoardo Di Porto

    (Università di Napoli Federico II, INPS and CSEF)

  • Joanna Kopinska

    (Università di Roma La Sapienza , CEIS Tor Vergata, Università di Roma Tor Vergata)

  • Maarten Lindeboom

    (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam; Centre for Health Economics, Monash University; Tinbergen Institute; IZA)

Abstract

This paper examines the effects of in-utero exposure to stress on lifelong labor market outcomes. We exploit a unique natural experiment that involved randomly placed Nazi raids on municipalities in Italy during WWII. We use administrative data on the universe of private sector workers in Italy and link this data to unique historical data with detailed information about war casualties and Nazi raids across space (Municipality) and time. We find that prenatal stress exposure leads to lower wage earnings when workers start their career, and that this effect persists until retirement. The earnings penalty is in large part due to the type of job that people hold and interruptions in their working career due to unemployment. We further show that workers exposed to in-utero stress face larger earnings reductions after job loss due to mass layoffs. This earnings loss deepens their relative disadvantage over time.

Suggested Citation

  • Vincenzo Atella & Edoardo Di Porto & Joanna Kopinska & Maarten Lindeboom, 2020. "Maternal Stress and Offspring Lifelong Labor Market Outcomes," CSEF Working Papers 584, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:sef:csefwp:584
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    2. Daniel Auer & Johannes S. Kunz, 2021. "Communication Barriers and Infant Health: Intergenerational Effects of Randomly Allocating Refugees Across Language Regions," Papers 2021-05, Centre for Health Economics, Monash University.
    3. Duque, Valentina & Schmitz, Lauren L., 2020. "The Influence of Early-life Economic Shocks on Long-term Outcomes: Evidence from the U.S. Great Depression," Working Papers 2020-11, University of Sydney, School of Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Early-life; Stress; Life-long earnings; Mass Layoff; Dynamic Complementarities.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development

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