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How Does Children's Sex Affect Parental Sex Preference: Preference Adaptation and Learning

Qianqian Shang (), Quanbao Jiang () and Yongkun Yin
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Qianqian Shang: CEMFI, Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros,
Quanbao Jiang: Xi'an Jiaotong University,

Working Papers from CEMFI

Abstract: This study examines the effects of children's sex on women's sex preference and investigates the underlying mechanisms. Women's sex preference is measured by the proportion of sons and daughters they would like to have. Based on data of a national representative sample of Peruvian women in the Demographic and Health Survey, we find that if the first child is a daughter, the ideal proportion of sons will be lower by 6.2 percentage points (pp), and the ideal proportion of daughters will be higher by 5.3 pp. Moreover, if the first two children are daughters, the ideal proportion of sons will be lower by 8.9 pp, and the ideal proportion of daughters will be higher by 6.2 pp. Further analysis shows that the effects of the sex of the first child are stronger for women with only one child than for women with multiple children and that the effects of having a daughter depend on her birth order, suggesting that both preference adaptation and learning play important roles in generating the effects of children's sex on parental sex preference.

Keywords: Sex of children; sex preference; preference adaptation; learning. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D19 J13 J16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022-02
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ban and nep-hea
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