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Title: Essays on the Economics of Marriage [Electronic Resource]
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Nandi, Alita
Essays on the Economics of Marriage [Electronic Resource]
Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Economics, The Ohio State University, 2007.
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Publisher: Department of Economics, The Ohio State University
Keyword(s): Cohabitation; Education; Household Income; Marriage; Racial Differences; Welfare; Women

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

Recent U.S. policies that promote marriage have prompted researchers to reexamine the reasons behind black marriage rates being lower than white marriage rates. In the first essay, "The Role of Education in the Marital Decisions of Blacks and Whites" I ask how much of the black-white marriage gap would be eliminated if racial differences in schooling attainment were reduced. I use data from the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY79) to simultaneously estimate schooling and marriage models. I find that increasing the schooling of black men by one year increases the predicted probability of marriage (by age 35) by more than 5%. The estimated effect is much smaller for white men and black women, and it is negative for white women. Using these estimated coefficients, I predict that eliminating black-white differences in schooling (which I simulate by assigning all blacks the mean schooling of their white counterparts) would decrease the gap in marriage probabilities by 17% for men and 4.5% for women. I conclude that public policy designed to increase education can have small but nontrivial effects on the black-white marriage gap. In the second essay, "Women's Economic Gains from Employment, Marriage and Cohabitation" I ask which of the mechanisms--employment, marriage or cohabitation--leads to greater economic gains, especially for women predisposed towards poverty. Using data from the NLSY79, I estimate a fixed-effects model of household income (adjusted for household composition) to assess the within-person gains associated with changes in employment and marital status; I allow the effects of employment on household income to differ for single, cohabiting, and married women. First I predict that the log household income of single, nonemployed, "poor" (those who ever received welfare) women increases by 0.80, if they enter a cohabiting union, 1.04 if they marry, 0.76 if they work part-time (1000 hours/year), and 1.16 if they work full-time (2000 hours/year). Next I find that the expected gains from cohabitation, marriage and employment for nonpoor women are greater than those for their poor counterparts. For any of the transitions, the poor-nonpoor difference in predicted gains declines as the initial employment levels increase.
Bibliography Citation
Nandi, Alita. Essays on the Economics of Marriage [Electronic Resource]. Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Economics, The Ohio State University, 2007..