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The Nonlinear Link between Height and Wages: An Empirical Investigation

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Author Info

  • Hübler, Olaf

    ()
    (Leibniz University of Hannover)

Abstract

This article investigates the relationship between individual wages and height using the German Socio-Economic Panel where five hypotheses are tested. Some explanations of a positive link exist and empirical studies confirm this hypothesis. In contrast to previous investigations which are only based on a linear effect this paper finds that the individual height effects on wages are curvilinear. During the considered period from 1985 to 2004 we observe a slightly nonlinear falling trend. After controlling for time effects a nonlinear relationship between individual height and wages remains with a maximum below the average height for females and above the average for males. We detect endowment and discrimination influences. The latter are firstly due to employer discrimination and secondarily less likely due to customer discrimination.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp2394.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2394.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Economics and Human Biology, 2009, 7 (2), 191-199
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2394

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Related research

Keywords: discrimination; wages; nonlinear; height; cyclical effects;

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References

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  1. Andrea Galeotti & Gerrit M�ller, 2005. "Friendship Relations in the School Class and Adult Economic Attainment," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 05-032/3, Tinbergen Institute, revised 08 Aug 2005.
  2. John Komlos & Marieluise Baur, 2003. "From the Tallest to (One of) the Fattest: The Enigmatic Fate of the American Population in the 20th Century," CESifo Working Paper Series 1028, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Susan Averett & Sanders Korenman, 1996. "The Economic Reality of the Beauty Myth," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 31(2), pages 304-330.
  4. Kuhn, Peter & Weinberger, Catherine, 2003. "Leadership Skills and Wages," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt50q3c9n1, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  5. d'Hombres, Beatrice & Brunello, Giorgio, 2005. "Does Obesity Hurt Your Wages More in Dublin than in Madrid? Evidence from ECHP," IZA Discussion Papers 1704, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Nicola Persico & Andrew Postlewaite & Dan Silverman, 2004. "The Effect of Adolescent Experience on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Height," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 1019-1053, October.
  7. Komlos, John & Kriwy, Peter, 2003. "The Biological Standard of Living in the two Germanies," Discussion Papers in Economics 55, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  8. Hamermesh, Daniel S & Biddle, Jeff E, 1994. "Beauty and the Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1174-94, December.
  9. Mobius, Markus & Rosenblat, Tanya, 2010. "Why Beauty Matters," Staff General Research Papers 32112, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  10. John Cawley & Sheldon Danziger, 2004. "Obesity as a Barrier to the Transition from Welfare to Work," NBER Working Papers 10508, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. James J. Heckman & Lance J. Lochner & Petra E. Todd, 2003. "Fifty Years of Mincer Earnings Regressions," NBER Working Papers 9732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Amemiya, Takeshi & MaCurdy, Thomas E, 1986. "Instrumental-Variable Estimation of an Error-Components Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(4), pages 869-80, July.
  13. Guido Heineck, 2005. "Up in the Skies? The Relationship between Body Height and Earnings in Germany ," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 19(3), pages 469-489, 09.
  14. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-42, June.
  15. John Cawley, 2004. "The Impact of Obesity on Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  16. Dalton Conley & Rebecca Glauber, 2005. "Gender, Body Mass and Economic Status," NBER Working Papers 11343, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. T. Paul Schultz, 2002. "Wage Gains Associated with Height as a Form of Health Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 349-353, May.
  18. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
  19. Hausman, Jerry A. & Taylor, William E., 1981. "Panel data and unobservable individual effects," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 155-155, May.
  20. T. Paul Schultz, 2002. "Wage Gains Associated with Height as a Form of Health Human Capital," Working Papers 841, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Yakovlev, Pavel & Leguizamon, Susane, 2012. "Ignorance is not bliss: On the role of education in subjective well-being," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(6), pages 806-815.
  2. Johansson, Edvard & Böckerman, Petri & Kiiskinen, Urpo & Heliövaara, Markku, 2007. "The Effect of Obesity on Wages and Employment: The Difference Between Having a High BMI and Being Fat," Working Papers 528, Hanken School of Economics.
  3. Johansson, Edvard & Böckerman, Petri & Kiiskinen, Urpo & Heliövaara, Markku, 2009. "Obesity and labour market success in Finland: The difference between having a high BMI and being fat," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 36-45, March.
  4. Audrey Dumas & Saïd Hanchane, 2010. "How does job-training increase firm performance? The case of Morocco," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 31(5), pages 585-602, September.

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