Single Males in China: Sensitivity of Projections to Changes in the Sex Ratio, Fertility, and the Age Composition of the Marriage Market.

Ethan Sharygin Jennings, University of Pennsylvania

This paper introduces a new marriage projection model to study the demographic consequences of the impending bride shortage in China. Combined with low fertility, the high sex ratio of cohorts entering the marriage market in the near future will cause unprecedented competition among males for available spouses. The model presented in this paper projects marriage rates by age into the future and tests the sensitivity of the share of males who will remain unmarried above a given age to the sex ratio of new births, the age gap between spouses, assortative preferences, and aggregate fertility. A variety of policies are being discussed to address both the social and economic consequences of these "missing girls" as well as the root causes of sex ratio bias. The results suggest that policies focused on reducing the sex ratio of new births and increasing the age gap between spouses will have the most success.

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Presented in Poster Session 2