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The Effect of Abortion Legalization on Fertility, Marriage and Long-Term Outcomes for Women

Libertad Gonzalez (), Sergi Jimenez-Martin (), Natalia Nollenberger and Judit Vall-Castello
Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Judit Vall Castello ()

No 1035, Working Papers from Barcelona Graduate School of Economics

Abstract: We evaluate the short- and long-term effects for women of access to subsidized, legal abortion by exploiting the Spanish legalization of abortion in 1985. Using birth records and survey data, we find robust evidence that the legalization led to an immediate decrease in the number of births to women aged 21 and younger. This effect was driven by provinces with a higher supply of abortion services. In those regions, young women affected by the reform were also less likely to marry. Using data from the Labor Force Survey and exploiting the rollout of abortion clinics across provinces and over time, we find evidence that the affected cohorts of women, who were able to postpone fertility as a result of the legalization of abortion, achieved higher educational attainment and had higher life satisfaction 20 years after the reform. We do not find evidence of increases in the probability of being employed.

Keywords: abortion; fertility; education and labor market outcomes; satisfaction (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J12 J13 I21 C21 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur, nep-hap and nep-lab
Date: 2018-04
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Working Paper: The Effect of Abortion Legalization on Fertility, Marriage and Long-term Outcomes for Women (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: The effect of abortion legalization on fertility, marriage and long-term outcomes for women (2018) Downloads
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