Women’s labour force participation after the first birth in Sweden, 1980-2000

Diana Corman, Institute For Future Studies
Ying Hong, Stockholm University

Recent patterns of women’s return to work are studied using a new data set (Swedish Level of Living Survey 2000). Women’s labour supply is affected to a larger extent than men by their reproductive role. Mothers of small children have lower labor force participation rates than other women at labor-active ages. It is therefore relevant to identify the latest developments for groups with relatively low participation rates. Our results indicate that women return to employment later in the 1990s than in the 1980s. This is explained by the gradual extensions in the parental leave benefits for all working parents. Father’s take up of parental leave increases the possibilities for a shorter work interruption for the mother. The absence of education differentials in the patterns of return to work is explained by the wide acceptance of the mothers’ time out of work for reproductive reasons by the employers of any economic sector.

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Presented in Poster Session 2