Crisis at Home: Mancession-induced Change in Intrahousehold Distribution

By: Olivier Bargain (GREQAM – Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d’Aix-Marseille – ECM – Ecole Centrale de Marseille – CNRS – Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique – AMU – Aix Marseille Université – EHESS – École des hautes études en sciences sociales); Laurine Martinoty (CES – Centre d’économie de la Sorbonne – CNRS – Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique – UP1 – Université Panthéon-Sorbonne)
Abstract: The Great Recessions was essentially a ‘mancession’ in countries like Spain, the UK or the US, i.e. it hit men harder than women for they were disproportionately represented in heavily affected sectors. We investigate how the mancession, and more generally women’s relative opportunities on the labor market, translate into within-household redistribution. Precisely, we estimate the spouses’ resource shares in a collective model of consumption, using Spanish data over 2006-2011. We exploit the gender-oriented evolution of the economic environment to test two original distribution factors: first the regional-time variation in spouses’ relative unemployment risks, then the gender-differentiated shock in the construction sector (having a construction sector husband after the outburst of the crisis). Both approaches conclude that the resource share accruing to Spanish wives increased by around 7-9 percent on average, following the improvement of their relative labor market positions. Among childless couples, we document a 5-11 percent decline in individual consumption inequality following the crisis, which is essentially due to intrahousehold redistribu tion.
Keywords: mancession,intrahousehold allocation,unemployment risk

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