Effects of Lunar Calendar Use on Marriage and Fertility Decisions of Youth in South Korea

Myungho Paik, University of Texas at Austin
Heeju Shin, University of Texas at Austin

This paper examines how family cultural values, proxied by lunar calendar use for birthday, affect young individuals' marriage and fertility outcomes in South Korea. The lunar calendar is widely used together with the western calendar in everyday life, and is expected to represent well the family cultures. Using the Youth Panel surveyed between 2001 and 2005, we find that young people aged between 25 and 29 with lunar birthday are more likely to be married, even after controlling for individual characteristics and family background variables including father's education and household income. More interestingly, young married men with lunar birthday are more likely to have children, while young married women are not influenced by the tradition. These results are consistent with the hypotheses that young men from more traditional families enter into early marriage and that they are more likely to have offsprings at the earlier age.

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Presented in Poster Session 1