Home production and wages: evidence from the American Time Use Survey
- 437 Downloads
Using data from the American Time Use Survey for the years 2003–2006, this paper finds that housework has a negative relation with wages for both women and men. The negative relation between housework time and wages is not likely to arise from omitted working conditions that are correlated with housework, nor from omitted effort. For women, the negative relation between housework and wages appears in most occupations, including professional and managerial occupations. The connection of housework time to the ‘lack of interest’ argument proposed by defendants in class action sex discrimination cases is examined and is not supported by the evidence.
KeywordsHome production Housework Time use Wage differentials Lack of interest
JEL ClassificationD13 J22 J31
Many thanks to Shoshana Grossbard, Dan Hamermesh, Amy Nickens, and anonymous referees for helpful suggestions.
- Aliaga, C. (2006). How is the time of women and men distributed in Europe? Statistics in focus: Population and social conditions. Luxembourg: Eurostat.Google Scholar
- Bonke, J., Datta Gupta, N., & Smith, N. (2005). The timing and flexibility of housework and men and women’s wages. In D. S. Hamermesh & G. A. Pfann (Eds.), The economics of time use. North Amsterdam: Elsevier Press.Google Scholar
- Bryan, M. L., & Sevilla-Sanz, A. (2008). Does housework lower wages and why? Evidence for Britain. ISER working paper 2008–3. Colchester: University of Essex.Google Scholar
- Hersch, J. (1985). Effect of housework on earnings of husbands and wives: Evidence from full-time piece rate workers. Social Science Quarterly, 66(1), 210–217.Google Scholar
- Hersch, J. (1991a). The impact of nonmarket work on market wages. American Economic Review Papers and Proceedings, 81(2), 157–160.Google Scholar
- Juster, F. T., & Stafford, F. P. (1991). The allocation of time: Empirical findings, behavioral models, and problems of measurement. Journal of Economic Literature, 29(2), 471–522.Google Scholar
- Selmi, M. (2005). Sex discrimination in the nineties, seventies style: Case studies in the preservation of male workplace norms. Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal, 9(1), 1–50.Google Scholar