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The Narrowing of the U.S. Gender Earnings Gap, 1959-1999: A Cohort-Based Analysis

Catherine Weinberger () and Peter Kuhn ()
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Catherine Weinberger: University of California, Santa Barbara

No 2007, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: Using Census and Current Population Survey data spanning 1959 through 1999, we assess the relative contributions of two factors to the decline in the gender wage gap: changes across cohorts in the relative slopes of men's and women's age-earnings profiles, versus changes in relative earnings levels at labor market entry. We find that changes in relative slopes account for about one-third of the narrowing of the gender wage gap over the past 40 years. Under quite general conditions, we argue that this provides an upper bound estimate of the contribution of changes in work experience and other post-school investments (PSIs) to the decline of the gender wage gap.

Keywords: wages; United States; women; experience (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J7 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-lab
Date: 2006-03
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Published in: Industrial and Labor Relations Review, 2010, 63 (3), 384-406

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