U.S. Gender Occupational Segregation and Earnings Gap in the 1990s
Using Current Population Survey (CPS) and Census Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), this paper makes a descriptive inquiry into the changes of gender occupational segregation and the earnings gap in the U.S. labor market during the 1990s. This paper found that throughout the decade, including a brief recession in the early 1990s, there has been an upward mobility in the occupational distribution. More specifically, the occupational distribution has been fairly stable with a slight but consistent increase in the relatively prestigious occupational categories, and a modest but sustained decrease in the relatively less prestigious occupational categories. This finding suggests that the more symmetric occupational distribution between male and female workers, along with upward mobility of female workers, will continue to drive the gain in female workers? earnings - possibly resulting in the narrower earnings differences between male and female workers in the future.