Ruhr Economic Papers

Ruhr Economic Papers #741

The Effect of Schooling Age on Fertility

by Sandra Schaffner and Andrea Siebert-Meyerhoff

RWI, 12/2017, 37 S./p., 8 Euro, ISBN 978-3-86788-861-5 DOI: 10.4419/86788861



Fertility rates decline in most developed countries. This is especially true for Germany. Fertility is highly correlated with the skill level of women. The age at school enrolment and therefore the age at graduation depends on the month of birth. Children born before the cut-off date start school earlier than children born after the cut-off date. Therefore, there are also age differences at graduation. These differences can have an effect on the age at first birth and therefore the number of children. We analyze the effects of age at school enrolment on fertility in Germany. Our results suggest that women that are older at graduation are somewhat older at the age of first birth but do not have less children than younger women. Although, the effects on fertility are small we observe negative life-time earning effects of late enrolment for women in East-Germany.

JEL-Classification: I21, J13

Keywords: Fertility; education; regression discontinuity