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Female Labor Supply: Why is the US Falling Behind?

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Author Info

  • Blau, Francine D.

    ()
    (Cornell University)

  • Kahn, Lawrence M.

    ()
    (Cornell University)

Abstract

In 1990, the US had the sixth highest female labor participation rate among 22 OECD countries. By 2010, its rank had fallen to 17th. We find that the expansion of "family-friendly" policies including parental leave and part-time work entitlements in other OECD countries explains 28-29% of the decrease in US women's labor force participation relative to these other countries. However, these policies also appear to encourage part-time work and employment in lower level positions: US women are more likely than women in other countries to have full time jobs and to work as managers or professionals.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7140.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: American Economic Review: Papers & Proceedings, 2013, 103 (3), 251-256
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7140

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Keywords: labor supply; gender;

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References

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  1. Waldfogel, Jane, 1998. "The Family Gap for Young Women in the United States and Britain: Can Maternity Leave Make a Difference?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(3), pages 505-45, July.
  2. Eleonora Matteazzi & Ariane Pailhé & Anne Solaz, 2012. "Part-time wage penalties in Europe: A matter of selection or segregation?," Working Papers 250, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  3. Manning, Alan & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2007. "The Part-Time Pay Penalty for Women in Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 6058, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Christopher J. Ruhm, 1998. "The Economic Consequences Of Parental Leave Mandates: Lessons From Europe," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 113(1), pages 285-317, February.
  5. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2003. "Understanding International Differences in the Gender Pay Gap," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 106-144, January.
  6. Elena Bardasi & Janet Gornick, 2008. "Working for less? Women's part-time wage penalties across countries," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(1), pages 37-72.
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Cited by:
  1. Forlani, Emanuele & Lodigiani, Elisabetta & Mendolicchio, Concetta, 2013. "The impact of low-skilled immigration on female labour supply," IAB Discussion Paper 201320, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  2. Stefan Bauernschuster & Anita Fichtl, 2013. "Brauchen wir eine gesetzliche Frauenquote?," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 66(02), pages 39-48, 01.
  3. Emma Tominey, 2013. "Maternity Leave and the Responsiveness of Female Labor Supply to a Household Shock," Working Papers, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group 2013-016, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  4. Emma Tominey, 2013. "Maternity Leave and the Responsiveness of Female Labor Supply to a Household Shock," Discussion Papers, Department of Economics, University of York 13/11, Department of Economics, University of York.
  5. Anita Fichtl, 2013. "Gender Quotas on Boardroom Representation in Europe," CESifo DICE Report, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 11(3), pages 62-64, October.

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