The Impact of Earnings on the Transition to Fatherhood in Norway 1975-2009

Rannveig Kaldager, Statistics Norway and University of Oslo

Higher earnings potential and more gender egalitarian attitudes are expected to make men with higher educational attainment more attractive as partners and thus more likely to have a first child. To distinguish the impact of earnings potential from the impact of attitudes and values, this study uses observed annual earnings, rather than educational level, as a proxy for earnings potential. Hazard regressions are estimated on highly accurate registry data, covering all Norwegian men born 1955-1988 who are at risk of having a first child in the period 1975-2009. Results show that the yearly first birth rate increases monotonously with earnings quintile. Being in the 5th earnings quintile more than doubles yearly first birth rate compared to being in the 1st earnings quintile. The impact of earnings on first birth rate strengthens over time, despite fathers' stronger involvement in child care and house work and women's increasing labour force participation.

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Presented in Poster Session 6