The Gender Gap in Top Corporate Jobs
This paper studies the gender compensation gap among high-level executives in US corporations. We use the ExecuComp data set that contains information on total compensation for the top five highest paid executives of a large group of US firms over the period 1992-1997. About 2.5% of the executives in the sample are women. These women earn about 45% less than their male counterparts. As much as 75% of this gap can be accounted for by the fact that women manage smaller companies and are less likely to be CEO, Chair, or President of their company. The unexplained gender gap can be reduced to less than 5% when one further accounts for the fact that female executives are younger and have less seniority than male executives. Over the period under study, women have nearly tripled their participation in the top executive ranks and have also strongly improved their relative compensation, mostly by gaining representation into the larger corporations. While the absence of a significant gender gap (once we control for measurable characteristics) implies that women and men who hold similar jobs in firms of similar size received fairly equal treatment in terms of compensation, it does not rule out the possibility of discrimination in terms of gender segregation or promotion.
|Date of creation:||Oct 2000|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Vol. 55, no. 1 (October 2001): 3-21|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Sherwin Rosen, 1990. "Contracts and the Market for Executives," NBER Working Papers 3542, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Lazear, Edward P & Rosen, Sherwin, 1990. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Job Ladders," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(1), pages S106-23, January.
- Marianne A. Ferber & Carole A. Green, 1982. "Traditional or Reverse Sex Discrimination? A Case Study of a Large Public University," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 35(4), pages 550-564, July.
- Oaxaca, Ronald L. & Ransom, Michael R., 1994. "On discrimination and the decomposition of wage differentials," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 5-21, March.
- Hoffman, Emily P, 1976. "Faculty Salaries: Is There Discrimination by Sex, Race, and Discipline? Additional Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(1), pages 196-98, March.
- Johnson, George E & Stafford, Frank P, 1974. "The Earnings and Promotion of Women Faculty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(6), pages 888-903, December.
- Brian J. Hall & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 1998.
"Are CEOs Really Paid Like Bureaucrats?,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 113(3), pages 653-691.
- Katz, David A, 1973. "Faculty Salaries, Promotion, and Productivity at a Large University," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(3), pages 469-77, June.
- Wood, Robert G & Corcoran, Mary E & Courant, Paul N, 1993. "Pay Differences among the Highly Paid: The Male-Female Earnings Gap in Lawyers' Salaries," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(3), pages 417-41, July.
- Ransom, Michael R. & Megdal, Sharon Bernstein, 1993. "Sex differences in the academic labor market in the affirmative action era," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 21-43, March.
- Debra A. Barbezat, 1987. "Salary Differentials by Sex in the Academic Labor Market," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(3), pages 422-428.
- Goldin, Claudia, 1992.
"Understanding the Gender Gap: An Economic History of American Women,"
Oxford University Press, number 9780195072709, December.
- Claudia Goldin, 1990. "Understanding the Gender Gap: An Economic History of American Women," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gold90-1, September.
- Erica L. Groshen, 1991.
"The Structure of the Female/Male Wage Differential: Is It Who You Are, What You Do, or Where You Work?,"
Journal of Human Resources,
University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(3), pages 457-472.
- Erica L. Groshen, 1987. "The structure of the female/male wage differential: is it who you are, what you do, or where you work?," Working Paper 8708, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
- repec:nsr:niesrd:50 is not listed on IDEAS
- Oaxaca, Ronald, 1973. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 14(3), pages 693-709, October.
- Murphy, Kevin J., 1985. "Corporate performance and managerial remuneration : An empirical analysis," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1-3), pages 11-42, April.
- Peter F. Kostiuk, 1990. "Firm Size and Executive Compensation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(1), pages 90-105.
- Biddle, Jeff E & Hamermesh, Daniel S, 1998.
"Beauty, Productivity, and Discrimination: Lawyers' Looks and Lucre,"
Journal of Labor Economics,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(1), pages 172-201, January.
- Jeff E. Biddle & Daniel S. Hamermesh, 1995. "Beauty, Productivity and Discrimination: Lawyers' Looks and Lucre," NBER Working Papers 5366, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Blau, Francine D & Ferber, Marianne A, 1987. "Discrimination: Empirical Evidence from the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(2), pages 316-20, May.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7931. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.