ERIC Number: ED159275
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Jan
Reference Count: 0
The Improving Economic Status of Black Americans.
Smith, James P.
The major explanations for the narrowing in wage differentials between blacks and whites can be placed under four general categories: (1) more recent black cohorts begin their job experiences with larger initial stocks of human capital than previous cohorts; (2) the rural South to urban North migration has partly been superceded by Southern blacks moving to what are now economically vibrant Southern cities; (3) the effects of government affirmative action; and (4) changes in other aspects of the market such as the choice of full or part-time work, unique characteristics of certain occupations, and biases due to sample censoring. The rise in the ratio of black to white male and female wages is largely explained by converging nominal characteristics, with education playing the dominant role. Although migration accounts for only nine percent of the relative wage growth of black men and women, the South dominates regional comparisons. Relative black/ white ratios for both sexes have risen more rapidly in the South, especially among the young. As with migration, affirmative action programs were not a major contributor to rising relative wages. However, direct and indirect government employment, combined with the adoption of full-time jobs, the elimination of domestic services as their primary function, and rising educational levels, have contributed significantly to the remarkable wage advances of black women. (Author/EB)
Descriptors: Affirmative Action, Black Education, Black Employment, Blacks, Cohort Analysis, Comparative Analysis, Economic Factors, Economic Progress, Economic Status, Employed Women, Employment Patterns, Equal Opportunities (Jobs), Rural to Urban Migration, Salary Wage Differentials, Sex Differences, Statistical Analysis
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Washington, DC.; National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Rand Corp., Santa Monica, CA.