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NBER Working Papers by Jeff Biddle

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Working Papers

August 2011Cycles of Wage Discrimination
with Daniel S. Hamermesh: w17326
Using CPS data from 1979-2009 we examine how cyclical downturns and industry-specific demand shocks affect wage differentials between white non-Hispanic males and women, Hispanics and African-Americans. Women’s and Hispanics’ relative earnings are harmed by negative shocks, while the earnings disadvantage of African-Americans may drop with negative shocks. Negative shocks also appear to increase the earnings disadvantage of bad-looking workers. A theory of job search suggests two opposite-signed mechanisms that affect these wage differentials. It suggests greater absolute effects among job-movers, which is verified using the longitudinal component of the CPS.

Published: "Wage discrimination over the business cycle." Jeff E Biddle and Daniel S Hamermesh. Journal of Labor Policy, 2013 2:7

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