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Sexual orientation and labour supply


  • Edinaldo Tebaldi
  • Bruce Elmslie


This is the first study of the effects of sexual orientation on labour supply. After discussing various reasons to expect that labour supply could differ by sexual orientation, the 2001 Current Population Survey is used to test for differences in both labour supply and labour market status (part-time, full-time, and not employed). It is found that gay men supply less labour than married and unmarried heterosexual men. With regard to women, it is found that lesbians supply more labour and are more likely to be employed full-time than either married or unmarried heterosexual women. Extensive controls are used and links to the discrimination literature are found.

Suggested Citation

  • Edinaldo Tebaldi & Bruce Elmslie, 2006. "Sexual orientation and labour supply," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(5), pages 549-562.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:38:y:2006:i:5:p:549-562
    DOI: 10.1080/00036840500293789

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Antecol, Heather & Steinberger, Michael D., 2009. "Female Labor Supply Differences by Sexual Orientation: A Semi-Parametric Decomposition Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 4029, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Benjamin Cerf, 2016. "Sexual Orientation, Income, and Stress at Work," Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(4), pages 546-575, October.
    3. Moberg, Ylva, 2016. "Does the gender composition in couples matter for the division of labor after childbirth?," Working Paper Series 2016:8, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    4. Doris Weichselbaumer, 2015. "Testing for Discrimination against Lesbians of Different Marital Status: A Field Experiment," Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(1), pages 131-161, January.
    5. Thierry Laurent & Ferhat Mihoubi, 2017. "Sexual Orientation, Unemployment and Participation: Are Gays Less Employable than Straights?," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 38(1), pages 1-44, March.
    6. Moberg, Ylva, 2016. "Does the gender composition in Couples matter for the division of labor after childbirth?," Working Paper Series 2016:8, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    7. Karen Leppel, 2016. "The incidence of self-employment by sexual orientation," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 46(3), pages 347-363, March.
    8. Oreffice, Sonia, 2011. "Sexual orientation and household decision making.: Same-sex couples' balance of power and labor supply choices," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 145-158, April.
    9. Christafore, David & Leguizamon, Susane, 2012. "The influence of gay and lesbian coupled households on house prices in conservative and liberal neighborhoods," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 258-267.
    10. Nasser Daneshvary & C. Waddoups & Bradley Wimmer, 2008. "Educational Attainment and the Lesbian Wage Premium," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 29(4), pages 365-379, December.
    11. Buser, Thomas & Geijtenbeek, Lydia & Plug, Erik, 2015. "Do Gays Shy Away from Competition? Do Lesbians Compete Too Much?," IZA Discussion Papers 9382, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    12. Botti, Fabrizio & D'Ippoliti, Carlo, 2012. "Sexual orientation and social exclusion in Italy," MPRA Paper 39246, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Stevenson, Adam, 2012. "The Labor Supply and Tax Revenue Consequences of Federal Same-Sex Marriage Legalization," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 65(4), pages 783-806, December.
    14. Madeline Zavodny, 2008. "Is there a ‘marriage premium’ for gay men?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 369-389, December.
    15. Karen Leppel, 2009. "Labour Force Status and Sexual Orientation," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 76(301), pages 197-207, February.
    16. Lisa Giddings & John Nunley & Alyssa Schneebaum & Joachim Zietz, 2014. "Birth Cohort and the Specialization Gap Between Same-Sex and Different-Sex Couples," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(2), pages 509-534, April.
    17. Bruce Elmslie & Edinaldo Tebaldi, 2007. "Sexual Orientation and Labor Market Discrimination," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 28(3), pages 436-453, July.
    18. Michael E. Martell, 2014. "HOW ENDAs EXTEND THE WORKWEEK: LEGAL PROTECTION AND THE LABOR SUPPLY OF BEHAVIORALLY GAY MEN," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 32(3), pages 560-577, July.

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