IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/jecinq/v11y2013i2p163-194.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Earnings inequality and skill mismatch in the U.S.: 1973–2002

Author

Listed:
  • Fabián Slonimczyk

Abstract

This paper shows that skill mismatch is a significant source of inequality in real earnings in the U.S. and that a substantial fraction of the increase in wage dispersion during the period 1973–2002 was due to the increase in mismatch rates and mismatch premia. In 2000–2002, surplus and deficit qualifications taken together accounted for 4.3 and 4.6% of the variance of log earnings, or around 15% of the total explained variance. The dramatic increase in over-education rates and premia accounts for around 20 and 48% of the increase in the Gini coefficient during the 30 years under analysis for males and females respectively. The surplus qualification factor is important in understanding why earnings inequality polarized in the last decades. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Fabián Slonimczyk, 2013. "Earnings inequality and skill mismatch in the U.S.: 1973–2002," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 11(2), pages 163-194, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jecinq:v:11:y:2013:i:2:p:163-194
    DOI: 10.1007/s10888-011-9212-1
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10888-011-9212-1
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1007/s10888-011-9212-1?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Kevin M. Murphy & Finis Welch, 1992. "The Structure of Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(1), pages 285-326.
    2. Hartog, Joop, 2000. "Over-education and earnings: where are we, where should we go?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 131-147, April.
    3. Slonimczyk, Fabián & Skott, Peter, 2012. "Employment and distribution effects of the minimum wage," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 245-264.
    4. DiNardo, John & Fortin, Nicole M & Lemieux, Thomas, 1996. "Labor Market Institutions and the Distribution of Wages, 1973-1992: A Semiparametric Approach," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1001-1044, September.
    5. 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.
    6. Duncan, Greg J. & Hoffman, Saul D., 1981. "The incidence and wage effects of overeducation," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 75-86, February.
    7. James Albrecht & Susan Vroman, 2002. "A Matching Model with Endogenous Skill Requirements," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(1), pages 283-305, February.
    8. repec:ums:papers:2012-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2006. "The U.S. Gender Pay Gap in the 1990S: Slowing Convergence," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 60(1), pages 45-66, October.
    10. Peter Skott, 2006. "Wage inequality and overeducation in a model with efficiency wages," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 39(1), pages 94-123, February.
    11. Bauer, Thomas K., 2002. "Educational mismatch and wages: a panel analysis," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 221-229, June.
    12. Sattinger, Michael, 1993. "Assignment Models of the Distribution of Earnings," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(2), pages 831-880, June.
    13. F Green & Steven McIntosh & Anna Vignoles, 1999. "Overeducation and Skills - Clarifying the Concepts," CEP Discussion Papers dp0435, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    14. Séamus McGuinness, 2006. "Overeducation in the Labour Market," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(3), pages 387-418, July.
    15. O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), 2011. "Handbook of Labor Economics," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 4, number 4.
    16. 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.
    17. O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), 2011. "Handbook of Labor Economics," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 4, number 5.
    18. Maarten Goos & Alan Manning, 2007. "Lousy and Lovely Jobs: The Rising Polarization of Work in Britain," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(1), pages 118-133, February.
    19. Katz, Lawrence F. & Autor, David H., 1999. "Changes in the wage structure and earnings inequality," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 26, pages 1463-1555, Elsevier.
    20. Richard R. Verdugo & Naomi Turner Verdugo, 1989. "The Impact of Surplus Schooling on Earnings: Some Additional Findings," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 24(4), pages 629-643.
    21. Tsai, Yuping, 2010. "Returns to overeducation: A longitudinal analysis of the U.S. labor market," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 606-617, August.
    22. O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), 1999. "Handbook of Labor Economics," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3.
    23. Mercedes Sastre & Alain Trannoy, 2002. "Shapley inequality decomposition by factor components: Some methodological issues," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 51-89, December.
    24. Rubb, S., 2003. "Overeducation in the labor market: a comment and re-analysis of a meta-analysis," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(6), pages 621-629, December.
    25. 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.
    26. Michael J. Handel, 2000. "Trends in Direct Measures of Job Skill Requirements," Macroeconomics 0004048, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    27. Thomas Lemieux, 2006. "Increasing Residual Wage Inequality: Composition Effects, Noisy Data, or Rising Demand for Skill?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 461-498, June.
    28. Lex Borghans & Andries de Grip (ed.), 2000. "The Overeducated Worker?," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 1860.
    29. Jaeger, David A, 1997. "Reconciling the Old and New Census Bureau Education Questions: Recommendations for Researchers," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 15(3), pages 300-309, July.
    30. Myeong‐Su Yun, 2006. "Earnings Inequality In Usa, 1969–99: Comparing Inequality Using Earnings Equations," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 52(1), pages 127-144, March.
    31. Acemoglu, Daron & Autor, David, 2011. "Skills, Tasks and Technologies: Implications for Employment and Earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 12, pages 1043-1171, Elsevier.
    32. Shorrocks, A F, 1982. "Inequality Decomposition by Factor Components," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 193-211, January.
    33. Hipólito Simón, 2010. "International Differences in Wage Inequality: A New Glance with European Matched Employer–Employee Data," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 48(2), pages 310-346, June.
    34. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2008. "Trends in U.S. Wage Inequality: Revising the Revisionists," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(2), pages 300-323, May.
    35. Daron Acemoglu, 2002. "Technical Change, Inequality, and the Labor Market," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(1), pages 7-72, March.
    36. Levy, Frank & Murnane, Richard J, 1992. "U.S. Earnings Levels and Earnings Inequality: A Review of Recent Trends and Proposed Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1333-1381, September.
    37. Melissa Osborne & Herbert Gintis & Samuel Bowles, 2001. "The Determinants of Earnings: A Behavioral Approach," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1137-1176, December.
    38. Sicherman, Nachum, 1991. ""Overeducation" in the Labor Market," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(2), pages 101-122, April.
    39. Jaeger, David A., 2003. "Estimating the returns to education using the newest current population survey education questions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(3), pages 385-394, March.
    40. Groot, Wim & Maassen van den Brink, Henriette, 2000. "Overeducation in the labor market: a meta-analysis," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 149-158, April.
    41. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-442, June.
    42. Francesco Devicienti, 2010. "Shapley-value decompositions of changes in wage distributions: a note," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 8(1), pages 35-45, March.
    43. David S. Lee, 1999. "Wage Inequality in the United States During the 1980s: Rising Dispersion or Falling Minimum Wage?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 977-1023.
    44. Arnaud Chevalier, 2003. "Measuring Over-education," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 70(279), pages 509-531, August.
    45. Felix Büchel & Andries de Grip & Antje Mertens (ed.), 2003. "Overeducation in Europe," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 3054.
    46. repec:pri:indrel:dsp01gb19f581g is not listed on IDEAS
    47. Bound, John & Johnson, George, 1992. "Changes in the Structure of Wages in the 1980's: An Evaluation of Alternative Explanations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 371-392, June.
    48. Osnat Israeli, 2007. "A Shapley-based decomposition of the R-Square of a linear regression," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 5(2), pages 199-212, August.
    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


    Cited by:

    1. Cuadras-Morató Xavier & Mateos-Planas Xavier, 2013. "Overeducation and skill-biased technical change," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 13(1), pages 1-18, September.
    2. Richard Holt, 2020. "The Costs of Mismatch," Edinburgh School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 298, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
    3. Alexander Ugarov, 2019. "Talent Misallocation across Countries: Evidence from Educational Achievement Tests," 2019 Meeting Papers 1466, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Salverda, Wiemer & Checchi, Daniele, 2014. "Labour-Market Institutions and the Dispersion of Wage Earnings," IZA Discussion Papers 8220, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. Xiangbo Liu & Theodore Palivos & Xiaomeng Zhang, 2017. "Immigration, Skill Heterogeneity, And Qualification Mismatch," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 55(3), pages 1231-1264, July.
    6. Slonimczyk, Fabián & Skott, Peter, 2012. "Employment and distribution effects of the minimum wage," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 245-264.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Salverda, Wiemer & Checchi, Daniele, 2014. "Labour-Market Institutions and the Dispersion of Wage Earnings," IZA Discussion Papers 8220, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    2. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2005. "Trends in U. S. Wage Inequality: Re-Assessing the Revisionists," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2095, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    3. Iñaki Iriondo & Teodosio Pérez-Amaral, 2013. "The Effect of Educational Mismatch on Wages Using European Panel Data," Working Papers 700, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
    4. Iñaki Iriondo & Teodosio Pérez-Amaral, 2013. "The Effect of Educational Mismatch on Wages Using European Panel Data," Working Papers 700, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
    5. Korpi, Tomas & Tåhlin, Michael, 2007. "Educational mismatch, wages, and wage growth: Overeducation in Sweden, 1974-2000," Working Paper Series 10/2007, Stockholm University, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
    6. Slonimczyk, Fabián & Skott, Peter, 2012. "Employment and distribution effects of the minimum wage," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 245-264.
    7. Daniela Rohrbach-Schmidt & Michael Tiemann, 2016. "Educational (Mis)match and skill utilization in Germany: Assessing the role of worker and job characteristics [Qualifikatorisches (Mis)matching und die Ausnutzung von fachlichen Kenntnissen und Fäh," Journal for Labour Market Research, Springer;Institute for Employment Research/ Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), vol. 49(2), pages 99-119, October.
    8. Van Reenen, John, 2011. "Wage inequality, technology and trade: 21st century evidence," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 730-741.
    9. Ariell Reshef, 2013. "Is Technological Change Biased Towards the Unskilled in Services? An Empirical Investigation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 16(2), pages 312-331, April.
    10. Koomen, Miriam & Backes-Gellner, Uschi, 2022. "Occupational tasks and wage inequality in West Germany: A decomposition analysis," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(C).
    11. Spitz, Alexandra, 2004. "Are Skill Requirements in the Workplace Rising? Stylized Facts and Evidence on Skill-Biased Technological Change," ZEW Discussion Papers 04-33, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    12. Ariell Reshef, 2013. "Is Technological Change Biased Towards the Unskilled in Services? An Empirical Investigation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 16(2), pages 312-331, April.
    13. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2008. "Trends in U.S. Wage Inequality: Revising the Revisionists," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(2), pages 300-323, May.
    14. Berlingieri, Francesco & Erdsiek, Daniel, 2012. "How relevant is job mismatch for German graduates?," ZEW Discussion Papers 12-075, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    15. Inmaculada Garc�a-Mainar & V�ctor M. Montuenga-G�mez, 2017. "Subjective educational mismatch and signalling in Spain," Documentos de Trabajo dt2017-03, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Zaragoza.
    16. James Spletzer & Elizabeth Weber Handwerker, 2015. "The Role of Establishments and the Concentration of Occupations in Wage Inequality," Working Papers id:7427, eSocialSciences.
    17. Michel Lubrano & Abdoul Aziz Junior Ndoye, 2014. "Bayesian Unconditional Quantile Regression: An Analysis of Recent Expansions in Wage Structure and Earnings Inequality in the US 1992–2009," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 61(2), pages 129-153, May.
    18. L. Cattani & G. Guidetti & G. Pedrini, 2014. "Assessing the incidence and wage effects of overeducation among Italian graduates using a new measure for educational requirements," Working Papers wp939, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    19. Monte, Ferdinando, 2011. "Skill bias, trade, and wage dispersion," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 202-218, March.
    20. Bhalotra, Sonia & Fernandez Sierra, Manuel, 2018. "The distribution of the gender wage gap," ISER Working Paper Series 2018-10, Institute for Social and Economic Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Skill mismatch; Earnings inequality; Shapley value decomposition; J31;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jecinq:v:11:y:2013:i:2:p:163-194. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Sonal Shukla or Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.