Central Data Catalog

Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Regional Science and Urban Economics
Title Do higher rents discourage fertility? Evidence from US cities, 1940-2000
Volume 39
Issue 1
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2009
Page numbers 33-42
URL https://core.ac.uk/download/files/432/12015670.pdf
This paper documents the existence of a negative cross-sectional correlation between the
price of living space and fertility using U.S. Census data over the period 1940-2000. This
correlation is not spurious, nor does it reflect the tendency of larger families to locate within lessexpensive
areas of a given metropolitan area. We examine the extent to which the results reflect
the sorting of married couples across metropolitan areas on desired fertility. The relationship
between the unit price of living space and fertility in fact tends to be more negative for
households that have moved recently. However, the probability of migration between
metropolitan areas is smaller for larger families, even those originating in more expensive cities.
Moreover, Durbin-Wu-Hausman tests reveal only limited evidence of endogeneity. The weaker
effects of the price of living space for less mobile couples seems to be at least in part a result of
their choosing to live in less-expensive portions within a given metropolitan area.

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