Marriage Market Equilibrium, Qualifications, and Ability

58 Pages Posted: 5 Apr 2019

See all articles by Dan Anderberg

Dan Anderberg

University of London, Royal Holloway College - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Jesper Bagger

University of London, Royal Holloway College - Department of Economics

Venkataraman Bhaskar

University of Texas at Austin

Tanya Wilson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: 2019

Abstract

We study marital sorting on academic qualifications and latent ability in an equilibrium marriage market model using the 1972 UK Raising of the School-Leaving Age (RoSLA) legislation as a natural experiment that induced a sudden, large shift in the distribution of academic qualifications in affected cohorts, but plausibly had no impact on the distribution of ability. We show that a Choo and Siow (2006) model with sorting on cohort, qualifications, and latent ability is identified and estimable using the RoSLA-induced population shifts. We find that the RoSLA isolated low ability individuals in the marriage market, and affected marital outcomes of individuals whose qualification attainment were unaffected. We also decompose the difference in marriage probabilities between unqualified individuals and those with basic qualifications into causal effects stemming from ability and qualification differences. Differences in marriage probabilities are almost entirely driven by ability.

Keywords: marriage, qualifications, assortative mating, latent ability

JEL Classification: D100, D130, I260, J120

Suggested Citation

Anderberg, Dan and Bagger, Jesper and Bhaskar, Venkataraman and Wilson, Tanya, Marriage Market Equilibrium, Qualifications, and Ability (2019). CESifo Working Paper No. 7570, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3366586

Dan Anderberg (Contact Author)

University of London, Royal Holloway College - Department of Economics ( email )

Royal Holloway College
Egham
Surrey, Surrey TW20 0EX
United Kingdom

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Jesper Bagger

University of London, Royal Holloway College - Department of Economics ( email )

Royal Holloway College
Egham
Surrey, Surrey TW20 0EX
United Kingdom

Venkataraman Bhaskar

University of Texas at Austin ( email )

2317 Speedway
Austin, TX 78712
United States

Tanya Wilson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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