The implementation of the universal two-child policy and the complete release of dividend policy reform need to actively improve all kinds of fertility supporting policies on the basis of the top-level design. From the perspective of motherhood delay, the paper provides empirical evidence on how to improve fertility supporting policies. Based on the revised Mincer wage function and using the CHIP2008 and CHIP2013 datasets, the impact and the mechanism of motherhood delay on the return of education are studied. The paper proposes a research hypothesis that motherhood delay will polarize the return of education. Theoretical analyses show that there are two reasons, active and passive delay, for women delaying childbearing age, which corresponds to the two results, increase and decrease of income. The difference comes from different jobs chosen due to education. The empirical results are consistent with theoretical analyses by econometric empirical studies about effects of motherhood delay on women’s income. Motherhood delay has polarized effects on the return of different education, which increases the return of high education and reduces the return of low education. In order to guarantee robustness of empirical results above, the paper performs deep analyses from four perspectives: extending the length of data, dealing with the ability variable omitted, changing the measure index of motherhood delay, and considering nonrandom behaviors of fertility. Specifically, CHIP2008 is added on the basis of CHIP2013, the problem of omitted abilities is solved using the instrumental variable method, motherhood delay is measured using continuous variables, and self-selection is solved using the framework of counterfactual analyses and the method of propensity score matching. The robust test shows that the empirical results still hold. Further studies show that polarized effects come from the difference in job stability and difficulty of professional title or leading roles. Specifically, women with high education mainly engage in jobs with more stable and easily obtaining professional titles or leading roles, while women with low education usually engage in jobs with the opposite. When choosing motherhood delay, the income of the former increases, while the latter decreases. Hence, the paper argues that different fertility supporting policies should be made among different education groups to improve the women childbearing willingness. Specifically, income compensation policies should be made for women with low education to overcome the " willing but unable to give birth” problem, and professional development compensation policies should be made for women with high education to settle the " able but unwilling to give birth” phenomenon.
Motherhood Delay, Polarized Return of Education and Fertility Supporting Policies
Journal of Finance and Economics Vol. 44, Issue 08, pp. 31 - 45 (2018) DOI:10.16538/j.cnki.jfe.2018.08.003
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Cite this article
Liu Feng, Hu Chunlong. Motherhood Delay, Polarized Return of Education and Fertility Supporting Policies[J]. Journal of Finance and Economics, 2018, 44(8): 31-45.