Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Wives, Mothers and Wages: Does Timing Matter?

Contents:

Author Info

  • Drolet, Marie
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    Current trends in marriage and fertility patterns suggest that young Canadian women are delaying family formation and concentrating on developing their careers. Using data from the 1998 Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics, this study provides Canadian evidence on the effect of marital status and parenthood status on the wage rates of Canadian women. As well, this paper attempts to determine whether decisions regarding the timing of family formation influence the wages of women and whether these decisions have a permanent or temporary impact on earnings. The main results of the paper are as follows. After controlling for differences in work history, labour force qualifications and selected job characteristics, the cross sectional analysis suggests that there is no association between marital status and wages while the evidence on the relationship between wages and motherhood is mixed. When controls for years with children were included, there is a positive association of motherhood with wages that persists in the early years of motherhood but declines as the number of years with children lengthens. These results support the specialization, selection, differential treatment by employers and the work effort explanations for differences in the wages of mothers relative to other women. There is no such finding for married women and the duration of marriage. It is a well-documented fact that the acquisition of job-related skills and significant wage growth is concentrated at the start of workers' careers - which generally coincides with decisions regarding marriage and children. If this is the case, then the timing of marriage and children may be considered proxies for omitted, unobserved characteristics, related to human capital skills, differentiated work history or labour force attachment. Conforming to theoretical expectations when the timing of children is taken into account, women that postpone having children earn at least 6.0% more than women who have children early. There is no significant association between the timing of marriage and wages. The observed relationship between women's wages and their decision to delay having children tends to persist after the birth of their first child but tends to decline over time. Thus, augmented family responsibilities will tend to reduce any initial wage differentials based on delays of assuming these responsibilities.

    Download Info

    If 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.
    File URL: http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/olc-cel/olc.action?ObjId=11F0019M2002186&ObjType=46&lang=en&limit=0
    Download Restriction: no

    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch in its series Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series with number 2002186e.

    as in new window
    Length:
    Date of creation: 01 May 2002
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:stc:stcp3e:2002186e

    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: Tunney's Pasture, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0T6
    Web page: http://www.statcan.gc.ca
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research

    Keywords: Births and deaths; Employment and unemployment; Labour; Population and demography; Society and community; Wages; salaries and other earnings; Women and gender;

    References

    References listed on IDEAS
    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.:
    as in new window
    1. Blackburn, McKinley L & Bloom, David E & Neumark, David, 1993. "Fertility Timing, Wages, and Human Capital," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 1-30.
    2. Jacob Mincer & Solomon Polacheck, 1974. "Family Investments in Human Capital: Earnings of Women," NBER Chapters, in: Economics of the Family: Marriage, Children, and Human Capital, pages 397-431 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. 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.
    4. Sanders Korenman & David Neumark, 1992. "Marriage, Motherhood, and Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 27(2), pages 233-255.
    5. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1990. "Empirical Age-Earnings Profiles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 202-29, April.
    6. 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.).
    7. Mincer, Jacob & Polachek, Solomon, 1974. "Family Investment in Human Capital: Earnings of Women," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages S76-S108, Part II, .
    8. Alice Nakamura & Masao Nakamura, 1994. "Predicting Female Labor Supply: Effects of Children and Recent Work Experience," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(2), pages 304-327.
    9. Becker, Gary S, 1985. "Human Capital, Effort, and the Sexual Division of Labor," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages S33-58, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    1. Hou, Feng & Picot, Garnett & Myers, Karen & Myles, John, 2006. "Why Did Employment and Earnings Rise Among Lone Mothers During the 1980s and 1990s?," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2006282e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    2. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Jean Kimmel, 2005. "“The Motherhood Wage Gap for Women in the United States: The Importance of College and Fertility Delay”," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 3(1), pages 17-48, 09.
    3. Zhang, Xuelin, 2008. "The Post-childbirth Employment of Canadian Mothers and the Earnings Trajectories of Their Continuously Employed Counterparts, 1983 to 2004," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2008314e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:stc:stcp3e:2002186e. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Brown).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.