Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 117–131 | Cite as

Effects of sexual preferences on earnings in the Netherlands

  • Erik PlugEmail author
  • Peter Berkhout


A small literature suggests that bisexual and homosexual workers earn less than their heterosexual fellow workers and that a discriminating labor␣market is partly to blame. In this paper we examine whether sexual preferences affect earnings at the beginning of working careers in the Netherlands. Using an alternative, and quite possibly a better, measure of sexual identity, we find (i) that young and highly educated gay male workers earn about 3% less than heterosexual men; (ii) that similarly qualified lesbian workers earn about 3% more than their heterosexual female co-workers; and (iii) that among homosexual workers the gender gap is not observed. From this we conclude that the Dutch labor market does not discriminate on the basis of both sexual orientation and gender in entry-level jobs.

JEL classification

J15 J16 J71 

Key words

Earnings sexual preferences gender differences discrimination 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Scholar, Research Center for Education and LaborDepartment of Economics and Econometrics, University of Amsterdam, Tinbergen Institute and IZAAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.SEO Amsterdam EconomicsUniversity of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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