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Long-term Consequences of Early Parenthood

Eva Rye Johansen, Helena Nielsen () and Mette Verner
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Eva Rye Johansen: Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University, Denmark
Mette Verner: VIVE (The Danish Centre of Applied Social Science)

Economics Working Papers from Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University

Abstract: Having children at an early age is known to be associated with unfavorable economic outcomes, such as lower education, employment and earnings. In this paper, we study the long-term consequences of early parenthood for mothers and fathers. Our study is based on rich register-based data that, importantly, merges all childbirths to the children’s mothers and fathers, allowing us to study the consequences of early parenthood for both parents. We perform a sibling fixed effects analysis in order to account for unobserved family attributes that are possibly correlated with early parenthood. The analysis is based on Danish men and women born between 1968 and 1977, from whom we identify brothers and sisters, respectively. We find that early parenthood reduces educational attainment and employment, and that the relationship is only slightly weaker for men than for women. One exception is earnings (and to lesser extent employment), as fathers appear to support the family, especially when early parenthood is combined with cohabitation with the mother and the child. Heterogeneous effects reveal that individuals with a more favorable socioeconomic background are affected more severely than individuals with a less favorable background. We interpret this as evidence of higher opportunity costs or stigma.

Keywords: Teenage childbearing; long-term outcomes; heterogeneous effects (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I21 J13 J24 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu and nep-his
Date: 2018-04-09
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:aah:aarhec:2018-01-

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