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Decomposing the education wage gap: everything but the kitchen sink

  • Julie L. Hotchkiss
  • Menbere Shiferaw

The authors use a multitude of data sources to provide a comprehensive, multidimensional decomposition of wages across both time and educational status. Their results confirm the importance of investments in and use of technology, which has been the focus of most of the previous literature. The authors also show that demand and supply factors played very different roles in the growing wage gaps of the 1980s and 1990s.

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File URL: http://research.stlouisfed.org/publications/review/11/07/hotchkiss.pdf
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Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its journal Review.

Volume (Year): (2011)
Issue (Month): July ()
Pages: 243-272

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlrv:y:2011:i:july:p:243-272:n:v.93no.4
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  1. David H. Autor & Frank Levy & Richard J. Murnane, 2003. "The skill content of recent technological change: an empirical exploration," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  2. Lawrence F. Katz & Kevin M. Murphy, 1992. "Changes in Relative Wages, 1963–1987: Supply and Demand Factors," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(1), pages 35-78.
  3. Crifo, Patricia, 2008. "Skill supply and biased technical change," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 812-830, October.
  4. Todd Schoellman & Lutz Hendricks, 2009. "Student Abilities During the Expansion of U.S. Education, 1950-2000," 2009 Meeting Papers 162, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  5. Dan A. Black & Natalia A. Kolesnikova & Lowell J. Taylor, 2007. "Earnings functions when wages and prices vary by location," Working Papers 2007-031, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  6. Timothy J. Bartik, 1991. "Who Benefits from State and Local Economic Development Policies?," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number wbsle.
  7. David Card & John E. DiNardo, 2002. "Skill-Biased Technological Change and Rising Wage Inequality: Some Problems and Puzzles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(4), pages 733-783, October.
  8. Enrico Moretti, 2002. "Estimating the Social Return to Higher Education: Evidence From Longitudinal and Repeated Cross-Sectional Data," NBER Working Papers 9108, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Autor, David & Dorn, David, 2009. "Inequality and Specialization: The Growth of Low-Skill Service Jobs in the United States," IZA Discussion Papers 4290, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Boris Hirsch & Marion König & Joachim Möller, 2013. "Is There a Gap in the Gap? Regional Differences in the Gender Pay Gap," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 60(4), pages 412-439, 09.
  11. Mariassunta Giannetti, 2001. "Skill Complementarities and Migration Decisions," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 15(1), pages 1-31, 03.
  12. Peter C.B. Phillips & Joon Y. Park, 1986. "On the Formulation of Wald Tests of Nonlinear Restrictions," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 801, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  13. David Card & Thomas Lemieux, 2001. "Can Falling Supply Explain the Rising Return to College for Younger Men? A Cohort-Based Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(2), pages 705-746.
  14. Thomas Lemieux, 2006. "Postsecondary Education and Increasing Wage Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 195-199, May.
  15. DuMond J.M. & Hisch, B.T. & Macpherson, D.A., 1996. "Wage Differentials Across Labor Markets and Workers: Does Cost of Living Matter?," Working Papers 1996_08_01, Department of Economics, Florida State University.
  16. Christopher H. Wheeler, 2005. "Evidence on wage inequality, worker education, and technology," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 375-393.
  17. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2006. "The Polarization of the U.S. Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 189-194, May.
  18. Barry T. Hirsch, 2005. "Why Do Part-Time Workers Earn Less? The Role of Worker and Job Skills," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 58(4), pages 525-551, July.
  19. Alan B. Krueger, 1993. "How Computers Have Changed the Wage Structure: Evidence from Microdata, 1984–1989," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(1), pages 33-60.
  20. Ingram, Beth F. & Neumann, George R., 2006. "The returns to skill," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 35-59, February.
  21. Robert H. Topel, 1997. "Factor Proportions and Relative Wages: The Supply-Side Determinants of Wage Inequality," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 55-74, Spring.
  22. Ben Jann, 2008. "The Blinder–Oaxaca decomposition for linear regression models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 8(4), pages 453-479, December.
  23. Fatih Guvenen & Burhanettin Kuruscu, 2009. "A quantitative analysis of the evolution of the U.S. wage distribution, 1970-2000," Staff Report 427, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  24. Ben Jann, 2008. "A Stata implementation of the Blinder-Oaxaca decomposition," ETH Zurich Sociology Working Papers 5, ETH Zurich, Chair of Sociology, revised 14 May 2008.
  25. Daniel Fernandez Kranz, 2006. "Why has wage inequality increased more in the USA than in Europe? An empirical investigation of the demand and supply of skill," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(7), pages 771-788.
  26. Daniel Aaronson & Daniel G. Sullivan, 2001. "Cross-state evidence on the relationship between unemployment and wage growth," Chicago Fed Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue May.
  27. Julie L. Hotchkiss & M. Melinda Pitts & John C. Robertson, 2006. "The push-pull effects of the information technology boom and bust: insight from matched employer-employee data," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2006-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  28. Julie L. Hotchkiss & M. Melinda Pitts & Mary Beth Walker, 2010. "Assessing the impact of education and marriage on labor market exit decisions of women," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2010-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
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