Unbalanced Sex Ratios in Germany Caused by World War II and Their Effect on Fertility: A Life Cycle Perspective

CentER Discussion Paper Series No. 2018-032

50 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2018

See all articles by Iris Kesternich

Iris Kesternich

KU Leuven - Department of Economics; Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU) - Faculty of Economics

Bettina Siflinger

University of Mannheim - Department of Economics

James P. Smith

RAND Corporation; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Carina Steckenleiter

University of St. Gallen

Date Written: September 10, 2018

Abstract

This paper analyses long-term effects of highly unbalanced sex ratios in Germany caused by World War II on fertility outcomes over the life cycle. By using Census data linked with individual biography data, we find that a permanent reduction in the number of men delayed women’s first birth. However, the effects crucially depend on at what age fertility of women is evaluated. While women with low sex ratios have fewer children at younger ages, they compensate at later ages. We also find substitution from the extensive towards the intensive margin. Mechanisms are marrying later, accepting lower quality matches and expanding the child-bearing period.

Keywords: Sex ratio, Fertility, Marriage, Life Cycle, World War II

JEL Classification: J10, J12, J13

Suggested Citation

Kesternich, Iris and Siflinger, Bettina and Smith, James P. and Steckenleiter, Carina, Unbalanced Sex Ratios in Germany Caused by World War II and Their Effect on Fertility: A Life Cycle Perspective (September 10, 2018). CentER Discussion Paper Series No. 2018-032, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3246999 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3246999

Iris Kesternich (Contact Author)

KU Leuven - Department of Economics ( email )

Leuven, B-3000
Belgium

Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU) - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Ludwigstrasse 28
Munich, D-80539
Germany

Bettina Siflinger

University of Mannheim - Department of Economics ( email )

D-68131 Mannheim
Germany

James P. Smith

RAND Corporation ( email )

P.O. Box 2138
1776 Main Street
Santa Monica, CA 90407-2138
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Carina Steckenleiter

University of St. Gallen ( email )

Varnbuelstr. 14
Saint Gallen, St. Gallen CH-9000
Switzerland

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
11
Abstract Views
212
PlumX Metrics