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Race and Education Differences in Disability Status and Labor Force Attachment

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  • John Bound
  • Michael Schoenbaum
  • Timothy Waidmann

Abstract

The labor force participation rates of older, working-aged black men and men with lower levels of education have historically been significantly lower than those of white men and men with more education, respectively. This paper uses data from the alpha release of the new Health and Retirement Survey (HRS) to examine the extent to which variation in health and job characteristics can account for these differences. Our analysis suggests that race and education differences in health status of middle-aged men can explain a substantial fraction of black/white differences in labor force attachment and essentially all of the gap between men with different levels of education.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 5159.

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Date of creation: Jun 1995
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Publication status: published as "Disability Status and Racial Differences in Labor Force Attachment," Journal of Human Resources, Volume 30, Number 5, 1995. pp. 5227-5267.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5159

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  1. Parsons, Donald O, 1980. "The Decline in Male Labor Force Participation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 117-34, February.
  2. Bound, John & Waidmann, Timothy, 1992. "Disability Transfers, Self-Reported Health, and the Labor Force Attachment of Older Men: Evidence from the Historical Record," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1393-419, November.
  3. Timothy Waidmann & John Bound & Michael Schoenbaum, 1995. "The Illusion of Failure: Trends in the Self-Reported Health of the U.S. Elderly," NBER Working Papers 5017, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Juhn, Chinhui, 1992. "Decline of Male Labor Market Participation: The Role of Declining Market Opportunities," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(1), pages 79-121, February.
  5. Anderson, Kathryn H. & Burkhauser, Richard V., 1984. "The importance of the measure of health in empirical estimates of the labor supply of older men," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 16(3-4), pages 375-380.
  6. Welch, Finis, 1990. "The Employment of Black Men," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(1), pages S26-74, January.
  7. Steven Stern, 1989. "Measuring the Effect of Disability on Labor Force Participation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 24(3), pages 361-395.
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