Intergenerational mobility begins before birth.

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Date: July 2022
Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
Document Type: Report; Brief article
Length: 287 words

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Abstract :

Keywords Family planning; Intergenerational mobility; PRAMS Highlights * Endogenous family planning adoption lowers intergenerational mobility. * Reducing family planning costs raises absolute upward mobility by 0.3 standard deviations on average. * Differences in family planning costs can account for 20% of the racial gap in upward mobility. Abstract Nearly 40% of births in the United States are unintended, and this phenomenon is disproportionately common among Black Americans and women with lower education. Given that being born to unprepared parents significantly affects children's outcomes, could family planning access affect intergenerational persistence of economic status? We extend the standard Becker--Tomes model by incorporating an endogenous family planning choice. In a policy counterfactual where states reduce family planning costs for the poor, intergenerational mobility improves by 0.3 standard deviations on average. We also find that differences in family planning costs account for 20% of the racial gap in upward mobility. Author Affiliation: Department of Economics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1160 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, United States * Corresponding author. Article History: Received 9 March 2022; Accepted 10 March 2022 (footnote)[white star] Prepared for the November 2021 Carnegie-Rochester-NYU Conference on Public Policy, "Economic Access and Mobility." We thank our discussant Martha Bailey as well as Simeon Alder, Garrett Anstreicher, Dean Corbae, Chao Fu, Jeremy Greenwood, John Kennan, Marla Ripoll, Tim Smeeding, Jeff Smith, Chris Taber, Joanna Venator, and Matthew Wiswall for helpful comments. We also received valuable feedback from participants at macro and public brownbag seminars at University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Carnegie-Rochester-NYU Conference on Public Policy. We acknowledge the support by the PRAMS Working Group and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on data access. All errors are our own. Byline: Ananth Seshadri [aseshadr@ssc.wisc.edu], Anson Zhou [anson.zhou@wisc.edu] (*)

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A706769203