This paper analyzes the impact of the German Parental Leave Reform on mothers' careers in the long run. To identify the causal effect, we use a difference-in-difference approach that compares labor market outcomes of mothers who gave birth just before and right after the reform and net out seasonal effects by including the year before. Using the total population of the Integrated Employment Biographies, we observe that high-income mothers return later to the labor market. In contrast, we do not observe changes in the average duration of the employment interruptions for low income mothers. Seven to nine years after birth, we do not find effects on wages nor on the probability to hold a leadership positions for neither of the two groups. The result suggests that the longer career breaks for high-income mothers do not have negative effects on their subsequent careers.
(joint work with Corinna Froedermann and Katharina Wrohlich)