Age of Menarche, Adolescent Sexual Intercourse and Schooling Attainment of Women

J. Huang, W. Groot, J.G. Sessions, Y. Tseng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

We use data from the 1970 British Cohort Study to measure the effect of adolescent sexual intercourse on female schooling attainment. We emphasize the appropriate use of menarcheal age as an instrumental variable (IV) for early intercourse. Our analysis suggests that developmental trajectories vary with menarcheal age and, therefore, capturing variations in individual cognitive capacities induced by pubertal timing is crucial for the validity of the IV identification strategy. Our empirical results indicate that adolescent sexuality reduces full-time education by approximately one year. Given that 37 percent of females in our data exited virginity in adolescence, the aggregate loss of human capital as measured by average years of female schooling could be up to one-third of a year.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)717-743
Number of pages27
JournalOxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics
Volume81
Issue number4
Early online date2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019

JEL classifications

  • i21 - Analysis of Education
  • i24 - Education and Inequality

Keywords

  • ENDOCRINE-DISRUPTING CHEMICALS
  • PROBLEM-BEHAVIOR
  • TRANSMITTED-DISEASES
  • SOCIOECONOMIC-STATUS
  • ESTROUS CYCLES
  • EARLY PUBERTY
  • BODY-SIZE
  • RISK
  • GIRLS
  • HEALTH

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