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Inequality Of Wage Rates, Earnings And Family Income In The United States, 1975–2002

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  • Peter Gottschalk
  • Sheldon Danziger

Abstract

This paper analyzes distributional changes over the last quarter of the twentieth century. We focus on four distinct distributions: the distribution of hourly wage rates, the distribution of annual earnings of individuals, the distribution of annual earnings of families, and the distribution of total family income adjusted for family size. Both male wage rate inequality and family income inequality accelerated during the early 1980s, increased at a slower rate through the early 1990s and then stabilized at a high level through the early 2000s. The similarity in the timing of changes in these two distributions has been used as evidence that increased family income inequality primarily reflects increased inequality of wage rates. We show that other important factors were also at work.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Gottschalk & Sheldon Danziger, 2005. "Inequality Of Wage Rates, Earnings And Family Income In The United States, 1975–2002," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 51(2), pages 231-254, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:51:y:2005:i:2:p:231-254
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4991.2005.00153.x
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