Declining Female Labor Supply Elasticities in the U.S. And Implications for Tax Policy: Evidence from Panel Data
49 Pages Posted: 17 Aug 2015 Last revised: 21 Feb 2019
Date Written: 2015-01-01
Recent work has provided compelling evidence of a long-term decline in US female labor supply elasticities with respect to wages and to income. While previous work used cross-sectional data from the Current Population Survey (CPS), we reexamine the trend for married women using panel data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) from 1980 to 2006. We find evidence in support of a long-term decline in married femalesâ€™ labor supply elasticities on the participation margin, but less so on the hours margin. We also extend the analysis to investigating the implications of these results on welfare effects of tax reforms. Policy simulations indicate that shrinking elasticities, mostly concentrated on the participation margin, have contributed to a dramatic decline in welfare gains from actual and potential tax reforms since the 1980â€™s.
Keywords: Female labor supply, Taxes and labor supply
JEL Classification: H21, H24, H31, J22
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation