King, Alan G.; Knapp, Charles B.
April 1978
Industrial & Labor Relations Review;Apr78, Vol. 31 Issue 3, p347
Academic Journal
This paper investigates the determinants of lifetime earnings within and between black and white racial groups. Using longitudinal data, a three-equation recursive model—including education, postschool investment, and lifetime earnings equations—is estimated. The empirical results indicate that within both groups education and postschool investment are important determinants of lifetime earnings, but, contrary to the findings of some previous studies, socioeconomic background affects lifetime earnings only indirectly through its initial impact on education. Interracial differences in lifetime earnings are shown to be due primarily to differences in economic opportunity, rather than deficiencies in socioeconomic background.


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