The External Effects of Black-Male Incarceration on Black Females
We examine how the rising incarceration of Black men and the sex ratio imbalance it induces shapes young Black women’s behavior during their late teens and early twenties. Combining data from the BJS and the CPS to match incarceration rates with individual observations, we show that Black male incarceration lowers the odds of non-marital teenage fertility and increases single Black women’s school attainment and early employment. We do not find consistent evidence that high Black male incarceration rates decrease the likelihood of getting married for young Black women. These results are robust to using sentencing changes and prison capacity expansions as instruments for incarceration.
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