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Marriage, fertility and the selection of women into high-skill industries


  • James T. Bang
  • Bharati Basu


This article focuses on the selection of women into industries of different skill intensities as another dimension in the discussion of the differences in wages among similarly skilled women. Using the Current Population Survey (CPS) data and controlling for education and other factors, we find evidence that married women tend to work in industries that are less skill intensive and that pay lower wages. We also find that education and experience affect this selection process less favourably for married women compared with single women. Since less skill-intensive industries often pay lower wages for similar occupations, our results contribute to the broader debate over the gaps in wages between single and married women as well as men and women.

Suggested Citation

  • James T. Bang & Bharati Basu, 2012. "Marriage, fertility and the selection of women into high-skill industries," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(9), pages 829-834, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:19:y:2012:i:9:p:829-834 DOI: 10.1080/13504851.2011.607108

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    9. Richard E. Lucas & Andrew Clark & Yannis Georgellis & Ed Diener, 2002. "Re-Examining Adaptation and the Setpoint Model of Happiness: Reactions to Changes in Marital Status," DELTA Working Papers 2002-08, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
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