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Factors affecting levels and growth rates in the wage rates of women: evidence from nursing

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Using data from two surveys of nurses (1981 and 1989), the study examines the factors affecting the levels and growth rates in the wage rates paid to women, especially married women, who were licensed as Registered Nurses. Our results indicate that the influence of such household characteristics as marital status, age and number of children, and spouse's characteristic, tended to diminish over the 1980s. The evidence further suggests that the penalties for frequent switches in employment state were larger at the end of the decade than at the beginning. Further, wages paid to nurses with baccalaureates were statistically the same as those paid to nurses with lesser formal education. The return to the baccalaureate appears to be in the form of the higher wages and salaries earned by those who obtain post-baccalaureate degrees.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 1, 1998

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