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Child labor and the labor supply of other household members: evidence from 1920 America

Manacorda, Marco (2003) Child labor and the labor supply of other household members: evidence from 1920 America. CEPDP (590). Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK. ISBN 0753016680

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This paper analyses the effect of child labor on household labor supply using 1920 US Census micro data. The aim of the analysis is to understand who in the household benefits from child labor. In order to identify a source of exogenous variation in child labor I use State-specific child labor laws. I find that a rise in the proportion of working children by household is associated with no variation in parents¿ labor supply. I also find a strong negative externality among children: as the proportion of working children by household rises, everything else equal, the probability that each child works falls while the probability that he attends school rises. This suggests that parents redistribute entirely the returns from child labor to the children in the household, consistent with a model of household labor supply with fully altruistic parents.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2003 Marco Manacorda
Divisions: Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
JEL classification: J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J1 - Demographic Economics > J13 - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
N - Economic History > N1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Growth and Fluctuations > N12 - U.S.; Canada: 1913-
J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J2 - Time Allocation, Work Behavior, and Employment Determination and Creation; Human Capital; Retirement > J22 - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
K - Law and Economics > K3 - Other Substantive Areas of Law > K31 - Labor Law
Sets: Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2008 11:33
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2021 11:51

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