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An empirical investigation of wage discrimination in professional basketball

Author

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  • Mark Gius
  • Donn Johnson

Abstract

Previous research has shown that wage discrimination may exist in National Basketball Association (NBA) player salaries. These studies have shown that African-Americans earned from nine to twenty per cent less than whites when on-court performance is held constant. The authors could find no substantial research that has been done in this area since 1991. The present study re-examines this issue. Using salary data from the 1996-97 season and performance statistics from the 1995-96 season, a log-linear wage equation was estimated, and a Chow Test was performed. Holding all other factors constant, African-American players do not earn less than white players. The most important factors affecting an NBA player's salary are on-court performance, free agency, experience, and the draft status of the player. These results are important since they indicate that wage discrimination based on race appears to have been eliminated from the NBA.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark Gius & Donn Johnson, 1998. "An empirical investigation of wage discrimination in professional basketball," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(11), pages 703-705.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:5:y:1998:i:11:p:703-705
    DOI: 10.1080/135048598354168
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Quinn Andrew Wesley Keefer, 2013. "Compensation Discrimination for Defensive Players," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 14(1), pages 23-44, February.
    2. Lawrence M. Kahn, 2009. "The Economics of Discrimination: Evidence from Basketball," NCER Working Paper Series 40, National Centre for Econometric Research.
    3. Pelnar, Gregory, 2007. "Antitrust Analysis of Sports Leagues," MPRA Paper 5382, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Hisahiro Naito & Yu Takagi, 2017. "Is Racial Salary Discrimination Disappearing in the NBA? Evidence from Data during 1985--2015," Tsukuba Economics Working Papers 2017-002, Economics, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Tsukuba.
    5. Brandes, Leif & Brechot, Marc & Franck, Egon, 2015. "Managers’ external social ties at work: Blessing or curse for the firm?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 203-216.
    6. Erick Eschker & Stephen Perez & Mark Siegler, 2004. "The NBA and the influx of international basketball players," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(10), pages 1009-1020.
    7. repec:taf:applec:v:49:y:2017:i:37:p:3751-3757 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Hisahiro Naito & Yu Takagi, 2017. "Is there A Positive Association between Increasing Salary Discrimination in the NBA and Unshrinking Racial Income Gap of White and Black Citizens ?," Tsukuba Economics Working Papers 2017-001, Economics, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Tsukuba.
    9. Richard C. K. Burdekin & Richard T. Hossfeld & Janet Kiholm Smith, 2005. "Are NBA Fans Becoming Indifferent to Race? Evidence From the 1990s," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 6(2), pages 144-159, May.
    10. David Berri & Stacey Brook & Aju Fenn, 2011. "From college to the pros: predicting the NBA amateur player draft," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 25-35, February.
    11. repec:bla:ecinqu:v:55:y:2017:i:2:p:1091-1103 is not listed on IDEAS

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