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Labor Market Outcomes and Early Schooling: Evidence from School Entry Policies Using Exact Date of Birth

Pedro Cavalcante Oliveira and Daniel Duque

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Abstract: We use a rich, census-like Brazilian dataset containing information on spatial mobility, schooling, and income in which we can link children to parents to assess the impact of early education on several labor market outcomes. Brazilian public primary schools admit children up to one year younger than the national minimum age to enter school if their birthday is before an arbitrary threshold, causing an exogenous variation in schooling at adulthood. Using a Regression Discontinuity Design, we estimate one additional year of schooling increases labor income in 25.8% - almost twice as large as estimated using mincerian models. Around this cutoff there is also a gap of 9.6% on the probability of holding a college degree in adulthood, with which we estimate the college premium and find a 201% increase in labor income. We test the robustness of our estimates using placebo variables, alternative model specifcations and McCrary Density Tests.

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Date: 2019-05
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Handle: RePEc:arx:papers:1905.13281