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Inequality and Markets: Some Implications of Occupational Diversity

Inequality and Markets: Some Implications of Occupational Diversity Abstract This paper studies income distribution in an economy with borrowing constraints. Parents leave both financial and educational bequests; these determine the occupational choices of children. Occupational returns are determined by market conditions. If the span of occupational investments is large, long-run wealth distributions display persistent inequality. With a “rich” set of occupations, so that training costs form an interval, the distribution is unique and the average return to education must rise with educational investment. This finding contrasts with the usual presumption of diminishing returns to human capital. It is the central testable proposition of this paper. (JEL D14, D31, J24 ) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Economic Journal: Microeconomics American Economic Association

Inequality and Markets: Some Implications of Occupational Diversity

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Publisher
American Economic Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2010 by the American Economic Association
Subject
Articles
ISSN
1945-7685
eISSN
1945-7685
DOI
10.1257/mic.2.4.38
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract This paper studies income distribution in an economy with borrowing constraints. Parents leave both financial and educational bequests; these determine the occupational choices of children. Occupational returns are determined by market conditions. If the span of occupational investments is large, long-run wealth distributions display persistent inequality. With a “rich” set of occupations, so that training costs form an interval, the distribution is unique and the average return to education must rise with educational investment. This finding contrasts with the usual presumption of diminishing returns to human capital. It is the central testable proposition of this paper. (JEL D14, D31, J24 )

Journal

American Economic Journal: MicroeconomicsAmerican Economic Association

Published: Nov 1, 2010

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