NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Jason B. Cook

University of Pittsburgh
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Pittsburgh, PA 15213
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Institutional Affiliation: University of Pittsburgh

NBER Working Papers and Publications

September 2017Is There Still Son Preference in the United States?
with Francine D. Blau, Lawrence M. Kahn, Peter Brummund, Miriam Larson-Koester: w23816
In this paper, we use 2008-2013 American Community Survey data to update and further probe evidence on son preference in the United States. In light of the substantial increase in immigration, we examine this question separately for natives and immigrants. Dahl and Moretti (2008) found earlier evidence consistent with son preference in that having a female first child raised fertility and increased the probability that the family was living without a father. We find that for our more recent period, having a female first child still raises the likelihood of living without a father, but is instead associated with lower fertility, particularly for natives. Thus, by the 2008-2013 period, any apparent son preference in fertility decisions appears to have been outweighed by factors such as cost ...
 
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