Accounting for the Fertility Transition in the US

44 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2014 Last revised: 19 Oct 2014

See all articles by Casper Worm Hansen

Casper Worm Hansen

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics; University of Copenhagen

Peter S. Jensen

University of Southern Denmark - Department of Business and Economics

Lars Lønstrup

University of Southern Denmark - Department of Business and Economics

Date Written: January 17, 2014

Abstract

This study investigates the determinants of the fertility transition in the US from 1850 to the end of the 20th century. We find a negative relationship between years of schooling and fertility, which suggests that the rise in schooling accounts for at least 60 percent of the US fertility decline. By contrast, the analysis shows no evidence of a robust relationship between GDP per capita and fertility. These empirical facts corroborate theories stressing the importance of human capital investments in generating a transition from high to low fertility.

Keywords: Fertility transition; Schooling; Income; Q-Q trade-off; US states

JEL Classification: J11; J13; O11; I2

Suggested Citation

Hansen, Casper Worm and Jensen, Peter S. and Lønstrup, Lars, Accounting for the Fertility Transition in the US (January 17, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2380501 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2380501

Casper Worm Hansen (Contact Author)

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics ( email )

Øster Farimagsgade 5
Copenhagen K, DK 1153
Denmark

University of Copenhagen ( email )

Nørregade 10
Copenhagen, København DK-1165
Denmark

Peter S. Jensen

University of Southern Denmark - Department of Business and Economics ( email )

Campusvej 55
DK-5230 Odense M, 5230
Denmark

HOME PAGE: http://www.sam.sdu.dk/staff/psj

Lars Lønstrup

University of Southern Denmark - Department of Business and Economics ( email )

HOME PAGE: http://www.sdu.dk/staff/loe.aspx

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