How Status Inheritance Rules Affect Marital Sorting: Theory and Evidence from Urban China

38 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2016

See all articles by Li Han

Li Han

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - School of Humanities and Social Science; Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - School of Science

Tao Li

University of Macau

Yaohui Zhao

Peking University

Date Written: December 2015

Abstract

Using a matching model, we show that marital sorting by status tends to decline as parental statuses become less complementary in determining their children's status. Our test explores a policy change in China in which men are granted the same rights as women in passing residency permits (hukou) to their children regardless of their spouse's hukou – a change resulting in a less complementary status inheritance technology. We find that this change disrupted the previously rigid sorting by hukou and that the position of local men in the urban marriage market improved, whereas that of local women deteriorated.

Suggested Citation

Han, Li and Li, Tao and Zhao, Yaohui, How Status Inheritance Rules Affect Marital Sorting: Theory and Evidence from Urban China (December 2015). The Economic Journal, Vol. 125, Issue 589, pp. 1850-1887, 2015. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2716803 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecoj.12283

Li Han (Contact Author)

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - School of Humanities and Social Science ( email )

Room 2338
Clear Water Bay
Kowloon
Hong Kong

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - School of Science ( email )

Room 6515, 6/F, Lifts 25/26
Clear Water Bay
Kowloon
Hong Kong

Tao Li

University of Macau ( email )

P.O. Box 3001
Macau

Yaohui Zhao

Peking University ( email )

Department of Economics
Beijing 100871
China

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