Wage Differentials across Labor Markets and Workers: Does Cost of Living Matter?
Wage differential studies rarely account for interarea differences in cost of living, owing both to data limitations and theoretical ambiguity. This study develops a price index for 185 metropolitan areas comprising about 70% of the U.S. labor force. Current Population Survey data for 1985-95 and data on site-specific amenities are used to estimate earnings differentials based on nominal wages, wages fully adjusted for measured cost of living, and a simple approximation of "real" wages with partial adjustment for price-level differences. Dispersion in approximate real wages across 185 labor markets and differentials by region and city size are substantially lower than dispersion in nominal or full adjustment wages. Estimates of racial and ethnic differentials display moderate sensitivity to choice of a wage measure, whereas other standard differentials do not. Both nominal wages and wages fully adjusted for cost of living may provide misleading estimates of real wage differentials. Absent data on interarea prices and amenities, researchers should include detailed controls for region and city size in nominal wage equations. Copyright 1999 by Oxford University Press.
To our knowledge, this item is not available for
download. To find whether it is available, there are three
1. Check below under "Related research" whether another version of this item is available online.
2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.
Volume (Year): 37 (1999)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Fax: 01865 267 985
Web page: http://ei.oupjournals.org/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.oup.co.uk/journals|
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.:
- Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-78, December.
- Bellante, Don, 1979. "The North-South Differential and the Migration of Heterogeneous Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(1), pages 166-75, March.
- Montgomery, Edward, 1992. "Evidence on metropolitan wage differences across industries and over time," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 69-83, January.
- David E. Bloom & Gilles Grenier, 1993. "Language, Employment and Earnings in the United States: Spanish-English Differentials from 1970 to 1990," NBER Working Papers 4584, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Randall W. Eberts & Joe A. Stone, 1992. "Wage and Employment Adjustment in Local Labor Markets," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number wea, November.
- Greenwood, Michael J, et al, 1991. "Migration, Regional Equilibrium, and the Estimation of Compensating Differentials," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1382-90, December.
- Sahling, Leonard G & Smith, Sharon P, 1983. "Regional Wage Differentials: Has the South Risen Again?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(1), pages 131-35, February.
- Blomquist, Glenn C & Berger, Mark C & Hoehn, John P, 1988. "New Estimates of Quality of Life in Urban Areas," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 89-107, March.
- Barry T. Hirsch & John L. Neufeld, 1987. "Nominal and Real Union Wage Differentials and the Effects of Industry and SMSA Density: 1973-83," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(1), pages 138-148.
- Hanushek, Eric A, 1973. "Regional Differences in the Structure of Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 55(2), pages 204-13, May.
- Ciccone, Antonio & Hall, Robert E, 1996.
"Productivity and the Density of Economic Activity,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 54-70, March.
- Antonio Ciccone & Robert E. Hall, 1993. "Productivity and the Density of Economic Activity," NBER Working Papers 4313, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Antonio Ciccone & Robert E. Hall, 1995. "Productivity and the density of economic activity," Economics Working Papers 120, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
- Glaeser, E. L., 1998.
"Should transfer payments be indexed to local price levels?,"
Regional Science and Urban Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 1-20, January.
- Edward L. Glaeser, 1996. "Should Transfer Payments Be Indexed to Local Price Levels?," NBER Working Papers 5598, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Glaeser, Edward L & Mare, David C, 2001.
"Cities and Skills,"
Journal of Labor Economics,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(2), pages 316-42, April.
- McManus, Walter & Gould, William & Welch, Finis, 1983. "Earnings of Hispanic Men: The Role of English Language Proficiency," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(2), pages 101-30, April.
- Rosenbloom, Joshua L., 1996. "Was There a National Labor Market at the End of the Nineteenth Century? New Evidence on Earnings in Manufacturing," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(03), pages 626-656, September.
- Gyourko, Joseph & Tracy, Joseph, 1991. "The Structure of Local Public Finance and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 774-806, August.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:37:y:1999:i:4:p:577-98. 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: (Oxford University Press)or (Christopher F. Baum)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.