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A birth-cohort test of the wilson willis model of nonmarital fertility

Gray, Joanna and Stockard, Jean and Stone, Joe (2010): A birth-cohort test of the wilson willis model of nonmarital fertility.

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Abstract

This paper offers the first birth-cohort test of the Wilson-Willis model of black-white differences in nonmarital childbearing. Cohort data are uniquely suited to the model, and unlike prior evidence, support the power of the model’s predictions: For blacks, the nonmarital birth share rises, as predicted, with the ratio of female to male resources, but decreases for whites. Similarly, the nonmarital birth share for blacks decreases with the ratio of eligible men to women for blacks, as predicted, yet increases for whites. The model explains a majority of the racial difference in nonmarital birth shares.

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