We develop a model where selection into marriage and household search generate a marital wage premium. Beyond selection, married individuals earn higher wages for two reasons. First, income pooling within a joint household raises risk-averse individuals' reservation wages. Second, married individuals climb the job ladder faster, as they internalize that higher wages increase their partner's selectivity over offers. Specialization according to comparative advantage in search generates a premium that increases in spousal education, as in the data. Quantitatively, household search explains 10–33 percent and 20–58 percent of the premium for males and females, respectively, and accounts for its increase with spousal education.
Pilossoph, Laura, and Shu Lin Wee.
"Household Search and the Marital Wage Premium."
American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics,
Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure; Domestic Abuse
Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search