Volume 4 - Article 4 | Pages 125–132  

Changes in Swedish Women’s Individual Activity Status and the Subsequent Risk of Giving Birth in the 1980s and 1990s: An Extension of Studies by Gunnar Andersson and Britta Hoem

By Karsten Hank

Abstract

In this note the author uses Swedish register data to investigate changes in a woman’s activity status and her subsequent propensity to give birth. This extends previous studies of female labor force participation and childbearing conducted by Andersson (2000) and B. Hoem (2000). Both of them found pro-cyclical patterns of fertility in Sweden during the 1980s and 1990s.
The present analysis does not reveal any clear pattern in the effect of changes in women’s activity status in general on their subsequent birth intensities. We do find, however, that Swedish women generally face a higher risk of giving birth in calendar year t if they experienced a spell of unemployment in year (t-2) or (t-1). This holds even if the unemployment spell is followed by a change in the woman’s activity status. The latter normally leads to a closer attachment to the labor market.

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