NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Changing Nature of Wage Inequality

Thomas Lemieux

NBER Working Paper No. 13523
Issued in October 2007
NBER Program(s):   LS

The paper reviews recent developments in the literature on wage inequality, with a particular focus on why inequality growth has been particularly concentrated in the top end of the wage distribution over the last 15 years. Several possible institutional and demand-side explanations are discussed for the secular growth in wage inequality in the United States and other advanced industrialized countries. The paper concludes that three promising explanations for the growth in top-end wage inequality are de-unionization, the increased prevalence of pay for performance, and changes in the relative demand for the types of tasks performed by workers in high-paying occupations.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w13523

Published: Thomas Lemieux, 2008. "The changing nature of wage inequality," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 21(1), pages 21-48, January. citation courtesy of

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