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New Century, Old Disparities: Gender and Ethnic Wage Gaps in Latin America

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  • Nopo, Hugo R.

    () (GRADE)

  • Atal, Juan Pablo

    () (University of Pennsylvania)

  • Winder, Natalia

    (Inter-American Development Bank)

Abstract

This paper surveys gender and ethnic wage gaps in 18 Latin American countries, decomposing differences using matching comparisons as a non-parametric alternative to the Blinder-Oaxaca (BO) decomposition. It is found that men earn 9-27 percent more than women, with high cross-country heterogeneity. The unexplained pay gap is higher among older, informal and self-employed workers and those in small firms. Ethnic wage differences are greater than gender differences, and educational attainment differentials play an important role in explaining the gap. Higher ethnic wage gaps are found among males, single-income generators of households and full-time workers, and in rural areas. An important share of the ethnic wage gap is due to the scarcity of minorities in high-paid positions.

Suggested Citation

  • Nopo, Hugo R. & Atal, Juan Pablo & Winder, Natalia, 2010. "New Century, Old Disparities: Gender and Ethnic Wage Gaps in Latin America," IZA Discussion Papers 5085, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5085
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    1. Taş, Emcet O. & Reimão, Maira Emy & Orlando, Maria Beatriz, 2014. "Gender, Ethnicity, and Cumulative Disadvantage in Education Outcomes," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 538-553.
    2. Ashwini Deshpande & Smriti Sharma, 2016. "Disadvantage and discrimination in self-employment: caste gaps in earnings in Indian small businesses," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 46(2), pages 325-346, February.
    3. -, 2010. "Economic Survey of Latin America and the Caribbean 2009-2010: The distributive impact of public policies," Estudio Económico de América Latina y el Caribe, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL), number 1072 edited by Eclac.
    4. Sarra Ben Yahmed, 2012. "Gender Wage Gaps across Skills and Trade Openness," AMSE Working Papers 1232, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, Marseille, France, revised Nov 2012.
    5. Karolina Goraus & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2013. "The Goodwill Effect? Female Access to the Labor Market Over Transition: A Multicountry Analysis," Working Papers 2013-19, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    6. Alexandra Cortés Aguilar & María Alejandra Flórez Vera, 2016. "Diferencias salariales por género en el departamento de Santander - Colombia," REVISTA APUNTES DEL CENES, UNIVERSIDAD PEDAGOGICA Y TECNOLOGICA DE COLOMBIA, vol. 35(61), pages 267-302, January.
    7. Mainali, R. M. & Jafarey, S. & Montes-Rojas, G., 2013. "Earnings and Social Background: An evaluation of caste/ethnic wage differentials in the Nepalese labor market," Working Papers 13/01, Department of Economics, City University London.
    8. Maira Emy Reimão & Emcet O. Taş, 2017. "Gender Education Gaps among Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Groups in Bolivia," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 48(2), pages 228-262, March.
    9. Renata Gukovas & Miriam Muller & Ana Claudia Pereira & Maira Emy Reimao, 2016. "A Snapshot of Gender in Brazil Today," World Bank Other Operational Studies 25976, The World Bank.
    10. Annelle Bellony & Alejandro Hoyos & Hugo Nopo, 2010. "Gender Earnings Gaps in the Caribbean: Evidence from Barbados and Jamaica," Research Department Publications 4683, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    11. Yahmed, Sarra Ben, 2017. "Gender wage discrimination and trade openness. Prejudiced employers in an open industry," ZEW Discussion Papers 17-047, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    12. Tas, Emcet O. & Reimao, Maira Emy & Orlando, Maria Beatriz, 2013. "Gender, ethnicity and cumulative disadvantage in education : evidence from Latin American and African censuses," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6734, The World Bank.
    13. Balcazar Salazar,Carlos Felipe, 2015. "Long-run effects of democracy on income inequality : evidence from repeated cross-sections," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7153, The World Bank.
    14. Juan Manuel del Pozo Segura, 2017. " Has the Gender Wage Gap been Reduced during the 'Peruvian Growth Miracle?' A Distributional Approach," Documentos de Trabajo / Working Papers 2017-442, Departamento de Economía - Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú.
    15. Aristizábal-Ramírez, María & Canavire Bacarreza, Gustavo J & Jetter, Michael, 2015. "Income Inequality in Bolivia, Colombia, and Ecuador: Different Reasons," IZA Discussion Papers 9210, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    Keywords

    Latin America; wage gaps; ethnicity; gender; matching;

    JEL classification:

    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • O54 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Latin America; Caribbean

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