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Transitioning towards more equality? Wealth gender differences and the changing role of explanatory factors over time

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  • Sierminska, Eva
  • Piazzalunga, Daniela
  • Grabka, Markus M.

Abstract

We investigate the explanatory factors that have contributed to changing wealth levels and the gender wealth gap in Germany over the period 2002-2012. In particular, we analyze the role of changes in labor supply, permanent income, portfolio composition, and marital status on wealth accumulation. Using individual level micro data from the German Socio-Economic Panel results show that real mean wealth levels for the working age population have been decreasing for both women and men since 2002 and that the wealth gap has decreased by 13.5% to 30.700€. We show that the increased participation of women in the labor market and their occupational structure had an increasing positive role on women’s wealth accumulation. Making use of the panel dimension in the data and of Oaxaca-Blinder and Firpo, Fortin, Lemieux decompositions, in comparison to previous analyses, a diminishing role of permanent income is observed, due both to a reduction in the gender difference in permanent income and in gender differences in its returns. Overall, the evidence points to more equal wealth accumulation both in terms of characteristics and returns.

Suggested Citation

  • Sierminska, Eva & Piazzalunga, Daniela & Grabka, Markus M., 2018. "Transitioning towards more equality? Wealth gender differences and the changing role of explanatory factors over time," GLO Discussion Paper Series 252, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:glodps:252
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    Cited by:

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    2. Jaanika Meriküll & Merike Kukk & Tairi Rõõm, 2021. "What explains the gender gap in wealth? Evidence from administrative data," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 19(2), pages 501-547, June.
    3. Miriam Rehm, 2020. "Vermögensverteilung und Wirtschaftskrisen," Wirtschaftsdienst, Springer;ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, vol. 100(4), pages 245-249, April.
    4. Waitkus, Nora & Minkus, Lara, 2021. "Investigating the gender wealth gap across occupational classes," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 108206, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    5. Frémeaux, Nicolas & Leturcq, Marion, 2020. "Inequalities and the individualization of wealth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 184(C).
    6. Di Tommaso, Maria Laura & Contini, Dalit & De Rosa, Dalila & Piazzalunga, Daniela, 2020. "Tackling the Gender Gap in Math with Active Learning Teaching Practices," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 202016, University of Turin.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Wealth differences; Gender; SOEP; decomposition; labor supply; occupations;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation

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