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When Work Disappears: Manufacturing Decline and the Falling Marriage Market Value of Young Men

David Autor (), David Dorn () and Gordon Hanson ()

American Economic Review: Insights, 2019, vol. 1, issue 2, 161-78

Abstract: We exploit the gender-specific components of large-scale labor demand shocks stemming from rising international manufacturing competition to test how shifts in the relative economic stature of young men versus young women affected marriage, fertility, and children's living circumstances during 1990–2014. On average, trade shocks differentially reduce employment and earnings of young adult males. Consistent with Becker's model of household specialization, shocks to males' relative earnings reduce marriage and fertility. Consistent with prominent sociological accounts, these shocks heighten male idleness and premature mortality, and raise the share of mothers who are unwed and the share of children living in below-poverty, single-headed households.

JEL-codes: F16 J12 J13 J23 J31 L60 J16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
Note: DOI: 10.1257/aeri.20180010
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Related works:
Working Paper: When Work Disappears: Manufacturing Decline and the Falling Marriage Market Value of Young Men (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: When Work Disappears: Manufacturing Decline and the Falling Marriage-Market Value of Young Men (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: When Work Disappears: Manufacturing Decline and the Falling Marriage-Market Value of Young Men (2017) Downloads
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