The Review of Black Political Economy

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 429–439 | Cite as

Comparative labor supply of black and white women

  • Emily P. Hoffman


The presence of young children decreases women’s labor supply as shown by the LFPRs for women with young children (which are always considerably lower than those for women without young children). Also, the number of young children is almost always negatively related to annual hours of labor supplied (significantly so in half the regressions). Black and white women are found to have an inelastic labor supply, but with increasing elasticity from 1969 to 1974. There is a statistically significant difference in the estimated regression coefficients of the labor supply model for black and white married women in 1969 and 1974 in both the arithmetic and logarithmic forms. The husband’s earnings are significantly negatively related to white married women’s annual hours of work in 1974, while the relationship is not significant for black married women. Crosselasticity terms show that white married women decrease their annual hours of work in response to an increase in husband’s earnings to a greater extent than black married women in 1971 and 1974. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that black women do not rely on their husband’s earnings to as great an extent as white women.


Labor Supply White Woman Married Woman Black Political Economy Occupational Prestige 
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Copyright information

© Springer 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emily P. Hoffman

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