Paid Leave Pays Off: The Effects of Paid Family Leave on Firm Performance
61 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2020 Last revised: 18 Nov 2021
Date Written: September 2020
We explore how lowering labor market frictions for female workers affects corporate performance. Using the staggered adoption of state-level Paid Family Leave acts, we provide causal evidence on the value created by relieving frictions to accessing female talent, for private and public firms. Reduced turnover and an increase in female leadership are potential mechanisms that contribute to performance gains. Across specifications, our estimates indicate that treated establishments’ productivity increases by about 5% relative to neighbor control establishments. The treatment effect is larger when workers are in less religious counties and in those with more women of childbearing age.
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