Working Paper

Fertility Shocks and Equilibrium Marriage-Rate Dynamics


Abstract: Why did the marriage probability of single females in France after World War 1 rise 50% above its pre-war average, despite a 33% drop in the male/female singles ratio? We conjecture that war-time disruption of the marriage market generated an abnormal abundance of men with relatively high marriage propensities. Our model of matching over the lifecycle, when calibrated to pre-war data and two war-time shocks, succeeds in matching the French time path under the additional assumption of a pro-natalist post-war preference shock. We conclude that endogeneity issues make the sex ratio a potentially unreliable indicator of female marriage prospects.

Keywords: Family Economics; Household Formation; Marriage; Fertility.;

JEL Classification: D10; E13; J12; J13; O11;

https://doi.org/10.20955/wp.2015.007

Access Documents

File(s): File format is application/pdf http://research.stlouisfed.org/wp/2015/2015-007.pdf
Description: Full text

Authors

Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Part of Series: Working Papers

Publication Date: 2016-02-01

Number: 2015-7