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Short- and long-term effects of a child-labor ban

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  • Piza,Caio
  • Portela Fernandes De Souza,Andre

Abstract

This is the first study to investigate the short- and long-term causal effects of a child-labor ban. The study explores the law that increased the minimum employment age from 14 to 16 in Brazil in 1998, and uncovers its impact on time allocated to schooling and work in the short term and on school attainment and labor market outcomes in the long term. The analysis uses cross-sectional data from 1998 to 2014, and applies a fuzzy regression discontinuity design to estimate the impact of the ban at different points of individuals? lifecycles. The estimates show that the ban reduced the incidence of boys in paid work activities by 4 percentage points or 27 percent. The study finds that the fall in child labor is mostly explained by the change in the proportions of boys working for pay and studying, and observes an increase in the proportion of boys only studying as a consequence. The results suggest that the ban reduced boys? participation in the labor force. The study follows the same cohort affected by the ban over the years, and finds that the short-term effects persisted until 2003 when the boys turned 18. The study pooled data from 2007 to 2014 to check whether the ban affected individuals? stock of human capital and labor market outcomes. The estimates suggest that the ban did not have long-term effects for the whole cohort, but found some indication that it did negatively affect the log earnings of individuals at the lower tail of the earnings distribution.

Suggested Citation

  • Piza,Caio & Portela Fernandes De Souza,Andre, 2016. "Short- and long-term effects of a child-labor ban," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7796, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:7796
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    1. Kozhaya, Mireille & Martínez Flores, Fernanda, 2022. "Child Labor Bans, Employment, and School Attendance: Evidence from Changes in the Minimum Working Age," IZA Discussion Papers 15144, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    2. Kozhaya, Mireille & Martinez Flores, Fernanda, 2022. "Child labor bans, employment, and school attendance: Evidence from changes in the minimum working age," Ruhr Economic Papers 942, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor Standards; Labor Policies;

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • K31 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Labor Law

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