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Examining the gender wealth gap

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  • Sierminska, Eva M.
  • Frick, Joachim R.
  • Grabka, Markus M.

Abstract

Economic research on the determinants of gender differences in economic outcomes particularly in income and consumption is well established. Extending these investigations to other outcomes such as wealth up till now has been limited due to lack of individual-level data. Using the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) we find a significant ‘raw’ gender wealth gap of 50,000€ for married partners. Decomposition analyses reveal that the gap is largely driven by differences in characteristics between men and women (observables), particularly by individual’s own income and labour market experience. This is especially true at the bottom and at the top of the wealth distribution, which we show using semi-parametric decomposition techniques. Differences in the lower half of the distribution are mostly driven by the wealth function, i.e., the way in which women transform their characteristics into wealth.

Suggested Citation

  • Sierminska, Eva M. & Frick, Joachim R. & Grabka, Markus M., 2010. "Examining the gender wealth gap," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 669-690.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:espost:66144
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    Cited by:

    1. Thomas Y. Mathä & Alessandro Porpiglia & Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2014. "Wealth differences across borders and the effect of real estate price dynamics: Evidence from two household surveys," BCL working papers 90, Central Bank of Luxembourg.
    2. Schlömer-Laufen, Nadine & Kay, Rosemarie, 2013. "Zum Einfluss des Geschlechts des Übergebers auf die Wahl des familieninternen Nachfolgers: Eine theoretische und empirische Analyse in deutschen Familienunternehmen," Working Papers 01/13, Institut für Mittelstandsforschung (IfM) Bonn.
    3. GRABKA Markus & MARCUS Jan & SIERMINSKA Eva, 2013. "Wealth distribution within couples and financial decision making," LISER Working Paper Series 2013-02, LISER.
    4. Joanna Tyrowicz & Lucas van der Velde & Irene van Staveren, 2018. "Identifying Age Penalty in Women's Wages: New Method and Evidence from Germany 1984-2014," IAAEU Discussion Papers 201803, Institute of Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the European Union (IAAEU).
    5. repec:spr:demogr:v:54:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s13524-017-0572-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. repec:jid:journl:y:2018:v:25:i:1:p:1-43 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Julia Le Blanc & Alessandro Porpiglia & Federica Teppa & Junyi Zhu & Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2014. "Household saving behaviour and credit constraints in the euro area," BCL working papers 93, Central Bank of Luxembourg.
    8. Anglade, Boaz & Useche, Pilar & Deere, Carmen Diana, 2017. "Decomposing the Gender Wealth Gap in Ecuador," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 19-31.
    9. Becker, Gideon, 2015. "Econometric analysis of the wealth gap between East and West Germany," University of Tuebingen Working Papers in Economics and Finance 87, University of Tuebingen, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences.
    10. Grabka, Markus M. & Marcus, Jan & Sierminska, Eva, 2015. "Wealth Distribution within Couples," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 459-486.
    11. repec:eee:wdevel:v:107:y:2018:i:c:p:75-86 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Giovanni D’Alessio, 2018. "Gender wealth gap in Italy," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 433, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    13. Joanna Tyrowicz & Lucas van der Velde & Irene van Staveren, 2017. "Identifying Age Penalty in Women's Wages: New Method and Evidence from Germany 1984-2014," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 956, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    14. Erin Ruel & Robert Hauser, 2013. "Explaining the Gender Wealth Gap," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 50(4), pages 1155-1176, August.
    15. Joanna Tyrowicz & Lucas van der Velde & Irene van Staveren, 2015. "Differences in the Estimates of Gender Wage Gap Over The Life Cycle," Working Papers 2015-29, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    16. Nataliya Barasinska & Dorothea Schäfer, 2013. "Is the Willingness to Take Financial Risk a Sex-Linked Trait?: Evidence from National Surveys of Household Finance," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1278, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    17. Eva Sierminska, 2014. "Does Equal Opportunity Bring Men and Women Closer to Wealth Equality?," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 60(4), pages 985-990, December.
    18. Sophie Augustin & Katarina Hollan & Alyssa Schneebaum, 2015. "Bildungshomogamie und Vermögensverteilung in Österreich," Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft - WuG, Kammer für Arbeiter und Angestellte für Wien, Abteilung Wirtschaftswissenschaft und Statistik, vol. 41(3), pages 383-407.
    19. Philipp M. Lersch & Sergi Vidal, 2016. "My house or our home? Transitions into sole home ownership in British couples," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 35(6), pages 139-166, July.
    20. Thomas Y. Mathä & Alessandro Porpiglia & Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2014. "Wealth differences across borders and the effect of real estate price dynamics: Evidence from two household surveys," BCL working papers 90, Central Bank of Luxembourg.
    21. Cai, Lixin & Liu, Amy Y.C., 2015. "Wage determination and distribution in urban China and Vietnam: A comparative analysis," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 186-203.
    22. Siobhan Austen & Rachel Ong & Sherry Bawa & Therese Jefferson, 2013. "Trends in the Gender Wealth Gap Among Single Households in Australia, 2002-2010," Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre Working Paper series WP1308, Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School.
    23. SIERMINSKA Eva & DOORLEY Karina, 2012. "Decomposing household wealth portfolios across countries: An age-old question?," LISER Working Paper Series 2012-32, LISER.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Wealth gap; Wealth inequality; Gender; SOEP;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • D69 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Other
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being

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