The effects of Covid-19 on couples’ job tenures: Mothers have it worse

Open Access       

Authors: Cristina Lafuente, Astrid Ruland, Raül Santaeulàlia-Llopis and Ludo Visschers

Labour Economics, Vol. 83, August, 2023

We study the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the employment contracts and job tenures of couples, and how these are shaped by gender and the presence of children. Using the Spanish Labour Force Survey, we find that women with children have suffered relatively larger losses of higher-duration, permanent jobs since the pandemic than men or women without children. These losses emerge approximately one year after the onset of the pandemic and persist, even though the aggregate male and female employment rate has recovered. Our results point to potential labour market scars, in particular, for mothers, that hide behind standard aggregate employment measures.