Publication date: January 1973
Journal: American Journal of Sociology, volume 78
Authors: Larry E. Suter (U.S. Bureau of the Census) and Herman P. Miller (Temple University)
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Title: Income Differences Between Men and Career Women
NLS cohort used: Mature women
Abstract: It is often alleged that one of the reasons women earn less than men is because of their intermittent labor force behavior during their prime working years. This analysis of wage or salary income in 1966 for a national sample of men and women 30-44 years old attempts to estimate that part of the difference between the incomes of men and women which is due to age, lifetime career experience, education, occupational status, and extent of employment during 1966. The average earning of women in this sample was 39% of that received by men. The results of a regression analysis show that, if women had the same occupational status as men, had worked all their lives, and had the same education and year-round full-time employment in 1966, their income would be increased to 62% of that received by men. The coefficient of determination (R2) between wage and salary income and the other factors selected for study is .49 for women and .29 for men, indicating that the income level of women is more dependent on these few factors than is the income of men. The analysis suggests that fewer women than men are able to break away from only average-paying jobs into those with higher incomes.