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Gender Differences Across the Earnings Distribution: Evidence from NLS:86 & HSB:92

Author

Listed:
  • Konstantopoulos, Spyros

    () (Michigan State University)

  • Constant, Amelie F.

    () (Temple University)

Abstract

This study examines gender differences in the earnings of young adults in the 1980s and 1990s. We determine changes in the gender gap over time in the middle, the tails, and the variability of the earnings distribution. We employ data from two longitudinal, nationally probability samples of high school seniors: the National Longitudinal Study of high school seniors in 1972, and the High School and Beyond Study in 1980 (and the 5th and 4th follow-up studies respectively). We compute the average differences using effect size estimates expressed in standard deviation units. Differences in the tails and the variability are computed using number and variance ratios respectively. Adjusting for employment selection our findings reveal that once education, occupation, and marital status are taken into account gender differences in earnings (in the middle, the tails, and the variance of the earnings distribution) are eliminated. We observe similar results in gender differences for Whites, Blacks, and Hispanics.

Suggested Citation

  • Konstantopoulos, Spyros & Constant, Amelie F., 2004. "Gender Differences Across the Earnings Distribution: Evidence from NLS:86 & HSB:92," IZA Discussion Papers 1425, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1425
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Schoeni, Robert F, 1995. "Marital Status and Earnings in Developed Countries," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 8(4), pages 351-359, November.
    2. Sanders Korenman & David Neumark, 1991. "Does Marriage Really Make Men More Productive?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 282-307.
    3. Mary Corcoran & Greg J. Duncan, 1979. "Work History, Labor Force Attachment, and Earnings Differences between the Races and Sexes," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 14(1), pages 3-20.
    4. Carnoy, Martin, 1996. "Education and racial inequality: The human capital explanation revisited," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 259-272, June.
    5. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    6. O'Neill, June, 1990. "The Role of Human Capital in Earnings Differences between Black and White Men," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 25-45, Fall.
    7. Smith, James P & Welch, Finis R, 1989. "Black Economic Progress after Myrdal," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(2), pages 519-564, June.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    general statistical methods; gender differences in earnings;

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • C10 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - General

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