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Fertility, Household Structure, and Parental Labor Supply: Evidence from Rural China

Hongbin Li (), Junjian Yi () and Junsen Zhang
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Hongbin Li: Stanford University

No 9342, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: This paper tests the effects of fertility on household structure and parental labor supply in rural China. To solve the endogeneity problem, we use a unique survey on households with twin children and a comparison group of non-twin households. The ordinary least squares estimates show a negative correlation between fertility and parental labor supply. Using twinning as a natural experiment, we do not find evidence on the negative effects of fertility on parental labor supply. By contrast, we find that the twinning-induced increase in fertility enhances significantly the coresidence of grandparents. The results remain robust when we use the Chinese 1990 population census. We suggest that the negative effects of fertility on parental labor supply are mitigated by the childcare provided by grandparents. Our results have important implications for population and public childcare policies.

Keywords: fertility; parental labor supply; household structure (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J13 J18 J22 O10 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cna, nep-dem, nep-lma, nep-sea and nep-tra
Date: 2015-09
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