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Earnings Instability and Earnings Inequality of Males in the United States: 1967-1991


  • Haider, Steven J


Although much research has focused on recent increases in annual earnings inequality in the United States, the increases could have come from either of two sources: the distribution of lifetime earnings could have become more unequal or the receipt of lifetime earnings could have become more unstable. Based on an analysis of the 1968-92 Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we find that lifetime earnings inequality increased during the early 1980s and that earnings instability increased during the 1970s. We also examine how these trends are related to changes in the distribution of wages and hours and the returns to education. Copyright 2001 by University of Chicago Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Haider, Steven J, 2001. "Earnings Instability and Earnings Inequality of Males in the United States: 1967-1991," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(4), pages 799-836, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:v:19:y:2001:i:4:p:799-836

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Bound, John & Krueger, Alan B, 1991. "The Extent of Measurement Error in Longitudinal Earnings Data: Do Two Wrongs Make a Right?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(1), pages 1-24, January.
    2. MaCurdy, Thomas E., 1982. "The use of time series processes to model the error structure of earnings in a longitudinal data analysis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 83-114, January.
    3. Hause, John C, 1980. "The Fine Structure of Earnings and the On-the-Job Training Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 1013-1029, May.
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    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J59 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Other


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