EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Why Beauty Matters

Markus Mobius () and Tanya Rosenblat

American Economic Review, 2006, vol. 96, issue 1, 222-235

Abstract: We decompose the beauty premium in an experimental labor market where "employers" determine wages of "workers" who perform a maze-solving task. This task requires a true skill which we show to be unaffected by physical attractiveness. We find a sizable beauty premium and can identify three transmission channels: (a) physically attractive workers are more confident and higher confidence increases wages; (b) for a given level of confidence, physically attractive workers are (wrongly) considered more able by employers; (c) controlling for worker confidence, physically attractive workers have oral skills (such as communication and social skills) that raise their wages when they interact with employers. Our methodology can be adopted to study the sources of discriminatory pay differentials in other settings.

Date: 2006
Note: DOI: 10.1257/000282806776157515
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (151) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/000282806776157515 (application/pdf)
http://www.aeaweb.org/aer/data/mar06_data_20030963.zip (application/zip)
Access to full text is restricted to AEA members and institutional subscribers.

Related works:
Working Paper: Why Beauty Matters (2010)
Working Paper: Why Beauty Matters (2006) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:96:y:2006:i:1:p:222-235

Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from
https://www.aeaweb.org/journals/subscriptions

Access Statistics for this article

American Economic Review is currently edited by Esther Duflo

More articles in American Economic Review from American Economic Association Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Michael P. Albert ().

 
Page updated 2020-02-27
Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:96:y:2006:i:1:p:222-235