IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/qjecon/v107y1992i1p285-326..html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Structure of Wages

Author

Listed:
  • Kevin M. Murphy
  • Finis Welch

Abstract

Although surveys show that traditional orderings of average wage—i.e., higher earnings with higher schooling and concave age-wage profiles—have not changed during the past three decades, the actual size of the wage differentials measured by education or by work experience has varied from peak to trough by a factor of two-to-one. The patterns are not monotone, but there is a trend toward increased skill premiums. We first examine the structure of wages among white men distinguished by age and schooling for the period from 1963 to 1989. We then compare shifts in the distribution of wages and employment among the age x schooling categories to show in reference to a stable demand structure that employment alone cannot account for observed changes in relative wages. Finally, we describe the characteristics required of candidate demand shifters and offer examples using linear trend, business cycle shocks, and recent patterns of deficits in international trade.

Suggested Citation

  • Kevin M. Murphy & Finis Welch, 1992. "The Structure of Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(1), pages 285-326.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:107:y:1992:i:1:p:285-326.
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.2307/2118330
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

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

    More about this item

    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:oup:qjecon:v:107:y:1992:i:1:p:285-326.. 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). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.