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How much does marital sorting contribute to intergenerational socio-economic persistence?

Helena Holmlund ()
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Helena Holmlund: IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy, Postal: Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy, P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden

No 2019:21, Working Paper Series from IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy

Abstract: This paper investigates to what extent assortative mating contributes to intergenerational earnings persistence. I use an errors-in-variables model to demonstrate how pooling of partners’ ‘potential’ earnings affects intergenerational earnings persistence, and simulate persistence under different assumptions about assortative mating and women’s earnings distribution. Using Swedish data on cohorts born 1945–1965, I show that a substantial decline in marital sorting has contributed little to lowering intergenerational persistence. Variations in marital sorting must be large to affect intergenerational mobility to a great extent. Instead, the relative earnings distributions of men and women, in combination with sorting, are important for intergenerational persistence.

Keywords: assortative mating; intergenerational mobility (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I24 J12 J62 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 38 pages
Date: 2019-09-12
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur and nep-lab
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:2019_021

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