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The Effects of Competition and Equal Treatment Laws on the Gender Wage Differential

  • Weichselbaumer, Doris


    (University of Linz)

  • Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf


    (University of Linz)

This paper evaluates the impact of economic and legal variables on wage differentials between men and women. Since Becker (1957) economists have argued that competitive markets eliminate discrimination in the long run. On the other hand, practically all countries have enacted some sort of law mandating equal treatment of men and women. This paper uses a new international data set on the gender wage gap, which is constructed via a metaanalysis of existing studies. The findings show that both increased competition and the enactment of equal treatment laws reduce the gender wage gap.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 822.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2003
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Economic Policy, 2007, 22 (50), 235-287
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp822
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  1. Jacques Silber & Michal Weber, 1999. "Labour market discrimination: are there significant differences between the various decomposition procedures?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(3), pages 359-365.
  2. Altonji, Joseph G. & Blank, Rebecca M., 1999. "Race and gender in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 48, pages 3143-3259 Elsevier.
  3. T.D. Stanley & Stephen B. Jarrell, 1998. "Gender Wage Discrimination Bias? A Meta-Regression Analysis," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(4), pages 947-973.
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  5. T. D. Stanley, 2001. "Wheat from Chaff: Meta-analysis as Quantitative Literature Review," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(3), pages 131-150, Summer.
  6. Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1997. "I Just Ran Two Million Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 178-83, May.
  7. Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence M, 1992. "The Gender Earnings Gap: Learning from International Comparisons," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 533-38, May.
  8. Ronald Oaxaca, 1971. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," Working Papers 396, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  9. Reimers, Cordelia W, 1983. "Labor Market Discrimination against Hispanic and Black Men," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(4), pages 570-79, November.
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  12. David Neumark & Wendy A. Stock, 2001. "The Effects of Race and Sex Discrimination Laws," NBER Working Papers 8215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  14. Bernhard Boockmann, 2001. "The ratification of ILO conventions: A hazard rate analysis," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(3), pages 281-309, November.
  15. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2003. "Understanding International Differences in the Gender Pay Gap," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 106-144, January.
  16. Sandra E. Black & Philip E. Strahan, 2001. "The Division of Spoils: Rent-Sharing and Discrimination in a Regulated Industry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 814-831, September.
  17. Drusilla K. Brown, 2001. "Labor Standards: Where Do They Belong on the International Trade Agenda?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(3), pages 89-112, Summer.
  18. Randall S. Brown & Marilyn Moon & Barbara S. Zoloth, 1980. "Incorporating Occupational Attainment in Studies of Male-Female Earnings Differentials," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 15(1), pages 3-28.
  19. David Neumark, 1988. "Employers' Discriminatory Behavior and the Estimation of Wage Discrimination," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 23(3), pages 279-295.
  20. Sandra E. Black & Elizabeth Brainerd, 1999. "Importing equality? The effects of increased competition on the gender wage gap," Staff Reports 74, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  21. Lawrence M. Kahn, 1991. "Discrimination in professional sports: A survey of the literature," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 44(3), pages 395-418, April.
  22. Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence M, 1996. "Wage Structure and Gender Earnings Differentials: An International Comparison," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 63(250), pages S29-62, Suppl..
  23. Alan S. Blinder, 1973. "Wage Discrimination: Reduced Form and Structural Estimates," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 8(4), pages 436-455.
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