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Evaluating the pin money hypothesis: The relationship between women`s labour market activity, family income and poverty in Britain


Author Info

  • Jane Waldfogel

    (School of Social Work, Columbia University, 622 W. 113th Street, New York, NY 10025, USA)

  • Susan Harkness

    (Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics, Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE, UK (Fax:)

  • Stephen Machin

    (Department of Economics, University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT, UK (Fax:)


In this paper we evaluate the hypothesis that the over-representation of women amongst the low paid is of little importance because women`s earnings account for only a small proportion of total family income. Data from the General Household Survey (GHS), together with attitudinal evidence from three cross-sectional data sources, indicate that women`s earnings are in fact an important and growing component of family income. The majority of the growth in the share of women`s earnings occurs as a result of changing family labour structures; women`s earnings are playing an increasingly important role in keeping their families out of poverty. JEL classification: J16; J31.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Population Economics.

Volume (Year): 10 (1997)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 137-158

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:10:y:1997:i:2:p:137-158

Note: Received April 9, 1996/Accepted August 22, 1996
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Keywords: Women`s earnings · poverty · family income;

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Cited by:
  1. Hongbin Li & Lai Ting Sin & Junsen Zhang & Yaohui Zhao, 2005. "Relative Earnings of Husbands and Wives in Urban China," Discussion Papers 00014, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Department of Economics.
  2. Coral del Río & Carlos Gradín & Olga Cantó, 2006. "Pobreza y discriminación salarial por razón de género en España," Working Papers 0606, Universidade de Vigo, Departamento de Economía Aplicada.


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