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Journal of Population Economics

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Abortion Laws -- United States


This paper analyzes the impact of supply-side abortion restrictions on aggregate abortion and birth rates in the USA. Specifically, I exploit state and time variation in the implementation of the first targeted regulation of abortion provider (TRAP) law in a state to identify the effects of the laws. I find that TRAP laws are associated with a reduction in the abortion rate of approximately 5% the year the first law is implemented, and an average reduction of 11–14% in subsequent years. There is also evidence that TRAP laws increased birth rates by 2–3%, which accounts for approximately 80–100% of the observed decline in abortion rates.


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This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Journal of Population Economics. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Journal of Population Economics, 1-30.



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