Fertility and economic instability: the role of unemployment and job displacement
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In this paper, we study the separate effects of unemployment and job displacement on fertility in a sample of white collar women in Austria. Using an instrumental variable approach, we show that unemployment incidence as such has no negative effect on fertility decisions, but the very fact of being displaced from a career-oriented job has. Fertility rates for women affected by a firm closure are significantly below those of a control group, even after 6 years, and this is so irrespective of the incidence or the duration of the associated unemployment spell.
KeywordsFertility Unemployment Firm closures Human capital
JEL ClassificationJ13 J64 J65 J24
We are grateful to workshop participants in Essen and Milano. This project received funding from the Austrian Science Fund (NRN Labor Economics and the Welfare State). Emilia Del Bono acknowledges the support provided by the ESRC Centre on Micro-Social Change at ISER (grant RES-518-28-001). All errors and opinions are the authors’ sole responsibility.
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