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Do hours restrictions matter? A discrete family labor supply model with endogenous wages and hours restrictions


  • Wolf, Elke


The labor supply of West German married and cohabiting couples is analyzed using a discrete choice model. Following van Soest (1995), the labor supply decision is based on a household utility function which is determined by the leisure of the two spouses and net household income. Furthermore, heterogeneity of preferences and the German tax and benefit system are taken into account. We extend the neoclassical labor supply model in two directions. First, we allow for endogenous wages and find that there exist substantial wage differences between part-time and full-time jobs. In view of the negative wage differentials of part-time jobs, the model with endogenous wages predicts lower part-time employment than the standard neoclassical model. Compared with the distribution of actual hours worked, the share of part-time jobs is highly underpredicted. In a second step, hours restrictions are accommodated, as a result of which the estimated wage elasticities of both spouses are substantially reduced.

Suggested Citation

  • Wolf, Elke, 1998. "Do hours restrictions matter? A discrete family labor supply model with endogenous wages and hours restrictions," ZEW Discussion Papers 98-44, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:5214

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    1. Aaberge, R. & Colombino, U. & Strom, S., 1997. "Joint Labor Supply Decisions of Married Females and Males: An Empirical Analysis Based on Italian Household Data," Memorandum 18/1997, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
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    7. Susan L. Averett & Julie L. Hotchkiss, 2000. "Female Labor Supply With A Discontinuous, Nonconvex Budget Constraint: Incorporation Of A Part-Time/Full-Time Wage Differential," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(3), pages 461-470, August.
    8. Steiner, Viktor & Wagner, Kersten, 1997. "East West German wage convergence - How far have we got?," ZEW Discussion Papers 97-25, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    9. Laisney, François & Lechner, Michael & van Soest, Arthur & Wagenhals, Gerhard, 1993. "A Life Cycle Labour Supply Model with Taxes Estimated on German Panel Data: The Case of Parallel Preferences," ZEW Discussion Papers 93-01, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    10. Martijn P. Tummers & Isolde Woittiez, 1991. "A Simultaneous Wage and Labor Supply Model with Hours Restrictions," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(3), pages 393-423.
    11. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    12. Euwals, Rob & van Soest, Arthur, 1999. "Desired and actual labour supply of unmarried men and women in the Netherlands," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 95-118, March.
    13. John F. Ermisch & Robert E. Wright, 1993. "Wage Offers and Full-Time and Part-Time Employment by British Women," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 28(1), pages 111-133.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wolf, Elke, 2000. "Loosening hours constraints on the supply of labor: what if Germans had a Dutch labor market?," ZEW Discussion Papers 00-54, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    2. Anne C. Gielen, 2009. "Working hours flexibility and older workers' labor supply," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(2), pages 240-274, April.
    3. René Böheim & Mark P. Taylor, 2004. "Actual and Preferred Working Hours," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 42(1), pages 149-166, March.
    4. Steffen Otterbach, 2010. "Mismatches Between Actual and Preferred Work Time: Empirical Evidence of Hours Constraints in 21 Countries," Journal of Consumer Policy, Springer, vol. 33(2), pages 143-161, June.
    5. RenÈ B–heim & Mark P. Taylor, 2003. "Option Or Obligation? The Determinants Of Labour Supply Preferences In Britain," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 71(2), pages 113-131, March.
    6. Gutiérrez-i-Puigarnau, Eva & van Ommeren, Jos N., 2010. "Labour supply and commuting," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 82-89, July.
    7. Eva Gutierrez-i-Puigarnau & Jos van Ommeren, 2009. "Labour Supply and Commuting: Implications for Optimal Road Taxes," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 09-008/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    8. Wolf, Elke, 2002. "Lower wage rates for fewer hours? A simultaneous wage-hours model for Germany," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(5), pages 643-663, November.
    9. Laisney, François & Beninger, Denis, 2002. "Comparison between unitary and collective models of household labor supply with taxation," ZEW Discussion Papers 02-65, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    10. Vanessa Gash & Antje Mertens & Laura Romeu Gordo, 2010. "Women between Part-Time and Full-Time Work: The Influence of Changing Hours of Work on Happiness and Life-Satisfaction," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 268, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    11. Constant, Amelie F. & Otterbach, Steffen, 2011. "Work Hours Constraints: Impacts and Policy Implications," IZA Policy Papers 35, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities


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