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Pecuniary Incentives to Work in the U.S. during World War II

  • Casey B. Mulligan

It is argued that changes in workers' budget sets cannot explain the dramatic increases in" civilian work in the U.S. during World War II. Although money wages grew during the period wartime after-tax real wages were lower than either before or after the war. Evidence from the" 1940's also appears to be inconsistent with other pecuniary explanations such as wealth effects of" government policies, intertemporal substitution induced by asset prices and changes in the nonmarket price of time. Although untested and relatively undeveloped nonpecuniary models of behavior are tempting explanations for wartime work."

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6326.

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Date of creation: Dec 1997
Publication status: published as Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 106, no. 5 (October 1998): 1033-1077.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6326
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