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posted on 24.05.2006by Tomas Koegel
Recent literature shows the puzzling result of a positive and significant cross-country correlation between the total fertility rate and the female labour force participation rate across Western European countries. The present paper shows that this cross-country correlation becomes negative and significant, once one corrects the total fertility rate for a distortion, caused by an increasing age of childbearing, and controls in cross-country regressions for purchased child care use and female long-term unemployment. This result survives an empirical analysis in which the female labour force participation rate is treated as an endogenous variable.