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High Taxes and Housework

1 min readBy: Justin Higginbottom

High taxes keep single women in the kitchen. That comes from a new NBER paper “Taxes and Time Allocation: Evidence from Single Women.” From the abstract:

Hundreds of papers have investigated how incentives and policies affect hours worked in the market. This paper examines how income taxA tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities. es affect time allocation in the other two-thirds of the day. Using the Panel Study of Income Dynamics from 1975 to 2004, we analyze the response of single women’s housework, labor supply, and other time to variation in tax and transfer schedules across income levels, number of children, states, and time. We find that when the economic reward to participating in the labor force increases, market work increases and housework decreases, with the decrease in housework accounting for approximately two-thirds of the increase in market work.