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Gender Differences in Departure from a Large Firm

  • Nachum Sicherman

Looking at the personnel records of workers in a large company, where detailed reasons for worker departure are recorded, I find striking differences in the exit patterns between men and women. As is well known, a higher proportion of women leave for a variety of non-market reasons. Further, women state more often that wages, and not opportunities, as a reason for switching jobs. Women, on average, are more likely to leave the firm. This is specially true in periods of early tenure. For both men and women, the likelihood of departure increases in the first two months of tenure, and then declines at a decreasing rate. This decline is stronger for women. Using a proportional hazard model, with controls for observed characteristics, I find that tenure beyond five years, women are less likely to leave the firm than men. Tenure turnover profiles are computed for the different reasons of departure. This detailed breakdown provides additional insights into gender differences in quit behavior.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 4279.

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Date of creation: Feb 1993
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Industrial and Labor Relations Review, vol. 49, no. 3, pp. 484-505, (April 1996).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4279
Note: LS
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  1. Weiss, Andrew, 1984. "Determinants of Quit Behavior," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(3), pages 371-87, July.
  2. Light, Audrey & Ureta, Manuelita, 1992. "Panel Estimates of Male and Female Job Turnover Behavior: Can Female Nonquitters Be Identified?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(2), pages 156-81, April.
  3. Topel, Robert H, 1991. "Specific Capital, Mobility, and Wages: Wages Rise with Job Seniority," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(1), pages 145-76, February.
  4. Joseph G. Altonji & Robert A. Shakotko, 1985. "Do Wages Rise With Job Seniority?," NBER Working Papers 1616, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  6. Lisa M. Lynch, 1992. "Differential Effects of Post-School Training on Early Career Mobility," NBER Working Papers 4034, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Jacob Mincer, 1986. "Wage Changes in Job Changes," NBER Working Papers 1907, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Abraham, Katharine G & Farber, Henry S, 1987. "Job Duration, Seniority, and Earnings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 278-97, June.
  10. Jacob Mincer & Boyan Jovanovic, 1979. "Labor Mobility and Wages," NBER Working Papers 0357, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Light, Audrey Light & Ureta, Manuelita, 1990. "Gender Differences in Wages and Job Turnover among Continuously Employed Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 293-97, May.
  12. Henry S. Farber, 1992. "The Analysis of Inter-Firm Worker Mobility," Working Papers 687, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  13. Heckman, James J. & Singer, Burton, 1984. "Econometric duration analysis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1-2), pages 63-132.
  14. Kiefer, Nicholas M, 1988. "Economic Duration Data and Hazard Functions," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 26(2), pages 646-79, June.
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