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The Male Marital Wage Premium: Sorting Versus Differential Pay

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  • Petersen, Trond
  • Penner, Andrew
  • Hogsnes, Geir
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    Abstract

    We investigate whether the male marital and parenthood premia arise due to differential pay by employers or from differential sorting of employees on occupations and establishments. We investigate these premia in Norway using matched employee-employer data in the period 1980–97, a country where public policy has made it easier to combine family and career, with the clearest first-order impact on women, but with possibly attendant increased pressures on men to be more active in the family sphere. We find that the effect of marriage, and to a lesser extent of children, occurs mostly through sorting on occupations and occupation-establishment units. The role of differential pay from employers is marginal in explaining the marital and parenthood premia. We also find that about 50–75% of the martial premium is due to selection. The men who eventually marry and/or have children sort into the higher paying occupations and occupation-establishment units even prior to marriage and parenthood. There are no marital premia on wage growth within establishments, but marital premia on promotions. Part of the marital wage premium is thus due to higher promotion rates for married men.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley in its series Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series with number qt2053f73v.

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    Date of creation: 24 Oct 2006
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    Handle: RePEc:cdl:indrel:qt2053f73v

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    1. Abowd, J.M. & Kramarz, F. & Margolis, D.N., 1995. "High-Wage Workers and High-Wage Firms," Cahiers de recherche 9503, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
    2. Abbigail J. Chiodo & Michael T. Owyang, 2002. "For love or money: why married men make more," The Regional Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Apr, pages 10-11.
    3. Datta Gupta, Nabanita & Smith, Nina & Stratton, Leslie S., 2005. "Is Marriage Poisonous? Are Relationships Taxing? An Analysis of the Male Marital Wage Differential in Denmark," IZA Discussion Papers 1591, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Goux, Dominique & Maurin, Eric, 1999. "Persistence of Interindustry Wage Differentials: A Reexamination Using Matched Worker-Firm Panel Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(3), pages 492-533, July.
    5. Gupta, N.D. & Smith, N., 2000. "Children and Career Interruptions: the Family Gap in Denmark," Papers 00-03, Centre for Labour Market and Social Research, Danmark-.
    6. Jacobsen, Joyce P & Rayack, Wendy L, 1996. "Do Men Whose Wives Work Really Earn Less?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 268-73, May.
    7. repec:ese:iserwp:2005-01 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. David Neumark & Sanders D. Korenman, 1988. "Does marriage really make men more productive?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 29, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    9. Joni Hersch & Leslie S. Stratton, 2000. "Household specialization and the male marriage wage premium," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 54(1), pages 78-94, October.
    10. Gerrit Mueller & Erik Plug, 2006. "Estimating the effect of personality on male and female earnings," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 60(1), pages 3-22, October.
    11. Harry A. Krashinsky, 2004. "Do Marital Status and Computer Usage Really Change the Wage Structure?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(3).
    12. Leslie S. Stratton, 2002. "Examining the Wage Differential for Married and Cohabiting Men," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 40(2), pages 199-212, April.
    13. Ribar, David C., 2004. "What Do Social Scientists Know About the Benefits of Marriage? A Review of Quantitative Methodologies," IZA Discussion Papers 998, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Kenny, Lawrence W, 1983. "The Accumulation of Human Capital during Marriage by Males," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 21(2), pages 223-31, April.
    15. Kate Antonovics & Robert Town, 2004. "Are All the Good Men Married? Uncovering the Sources of the Marital Wage Premium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 317-321, May.
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