Decomposing Changes In Retail Food Wage Distributions, 1983-1998: A Semi-Parametric Analysis
AbstractWhat role has the growing practice of eating out rather than at home played in the evolution of wages in retail food? Between 1983 and 1998, real wages fell for nearly all types of grocery store employees, whether they were relatively well paid, poorly paid, or somewhere in the middle. This resulted in an eight and a half percent decrease in the average real wage, but unlike many other industries, there was no increase in wage inequality. The "food away from home trend" is apparently connected to the deterioration in grocery store wages for all employees except those earning somewhere in the top ten percent of wages. Without this change in consumer behavior, average real grocery store wages would have risen by seven percent rather than falling by 12 percent. While harmful to nearly all grocery store employees, this trend has benefited many workers in the restaurant industry, where the average real wage rose by nearly twenty five percent. Because this growth was not evenly distributed, occurring primarily in the upper part of the wage distribution, wage inequality in this segment of retail food increased. Moreover, the increase in the fast food sector during this period is associated with decreasing real wage levels, or slower wage growth, in both the grocery and restaurant industries. The labor market institutions of minimum wage laws and labor unionization are also found to be important determinants of wage trends in retail food. Part-time employment is associated with lower wage outcomes, but over the last 20 years, the frequency of part-time work in these two industries actually declines. Overall, however, labor market institutions and changing demographic characteristics still leave much of the observed changes in real wages in retail food unexplained. The data source for this analysis is the Current Population Survey, supplemented with secondary data sources.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Minnesota, The Food Industry Center in its series Working Papers with number 14327.
Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: 317 Classroom Office Building, 1994 Buford Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55108-6040
Web page: http://foodindustrycenter.umn.edu/
More information through EDIRC
Labor and Human Capital; Marketing;
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- George E. Johnson, 1997. "Changes in Earnings Inequality: The Role of Demand Shifts," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 41-54, Spring.
- repec:wop:minnit:9603 is not listed on IDEAS
- David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1997.
"Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed the Labor Market?,"
NBER Working Papers
5956, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1998. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed The Labor Market?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1169-1213, November.
- David Autor & Lawrence Katz & Alan Krueger, 1997. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed the Labor Market?," Working Papers 756, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
- Gary Burtless, 1995. "International Trade and the Rise in Earnings Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(2), pages 800-816, June.
- John W. Budd & Brian P. McCall, 2001.
"The Grocery stores wage distribution: A semi-parametric analysis of the role of retailing and labor market institutions,"
Industrial and Labor Relations Review,
ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 54(2), pages 484-501, March.
- Budd, John W. & McCall, Brian P., 1999. "The Grocery Stores' Wage Distribution: A Semi-Parametric Analysis Of The Role Of Retailing And Labor Market Institutions," Working Papers 14347, University of Minnesota, The Food Industry Center.
- Wessels, Walter John, 1997. "Minimum Wages and Tipped Servers," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(2), pages 334-49, April.
- Levy, Frank & Murnane, Richard J, 1992. "U.S. Earnings Levels and Earnings Inequality: A Review of Recent Trends and Proposed Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1333-81, September.
- Kinsey, Jean D. & Senauer, Benjamin & King, Robert P. & Phumpiu, Paul F., 1996. "Changes In Retail Food Delivery: Signals For Producers, Processors And Distributors," Working Papers 14352, University of Minnesota, The Food Industry Center.
- Chinhui Juhn, 1999. "Wage inequality and demand for skill: Evidence from five decades," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(3), pages 424-443, April.
- Peter Gottschalk, 1997. "Inequality, Income Growth, and Mobility: The Basic Facts," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 21-40, Spring.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.