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The Effect of Part-Time Work on Wages: Evidence from the Social Security Rules

  • Daniel Aaronson

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago)

  • Eric French

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago)

This article identifies the part-time wage effect, using hours variation caused by the social security rules. We show that work hours and wages drop sharply at ages 62 and 65. We argue that the hours decline causes the wage decline, resulting in a 25% wage penalty for men who cut their work week from 40 to 20 hours. However, we find little evidence for such an effect among women. We also show that models that fail to account for the joint determination of hours and wages will understate the labor supply response to a tax change by about 26%.

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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Labor Economics.

Volume (Year): 22 (2004)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 329-352

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:v:22:y:2004:i:2:p:329-352
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  1. Barry T. Hirsch, 2005. "Why Do Part-Time Workers Earn Less? The Role of Worker and Job Skills," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 58(4), pages 525-551, July.
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  12. Barzel, Yoram, 1973. "The Determination of Daily Hours and Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 220-38, May.
  13. Bound, John & Brown, Charles & Mathiowetz, Nancy, 2001. "Measurement error in survey data," Handbook of Econometrics, in: J.J. Heckman & E.E. Leamer (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 59, pages 3705-3843 Elsevier.
  14. Moffitt, Robert, 1984. "The Estimation of a Joint Wage-Hours Labor Supply Model," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(4), pages 550-66, October.
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  16. Rosen, Harvey S, 1976. "Taxes in a Labor Supply Model with Joint Wage-Hours Determination," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(3), pages 485-507, May.
  17. Lettau, Michael K., 1997. "Compensation in part-time jobs versus full-time jobs What if the job is the same?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 101-106, September.
  18. Heckman, James J & Macurdy, Thomas E, 1980. "A Life Cycle Model of Female Labour Supply," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 47-74, January.
  19. Ruhm, Christopher J, 1990. "Bridge Jobs and Partial Retirement," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(4), pages 482-501, October.
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