This paper studies how job seekers' beliefs about the wage offer distribution and the job arrival rate and the job dissolution rate shape the gender wage gap. Using the Survey of Consumer Expectations, we first document new evidence showing that females have lower reservation wages, expect to receive a lower number of offers when searching on the job and to be offered a lower wage while employed and unemployed. We then develop a partial equilibrium search model of the labor market and use the estimated model to decompose the sources of the gender wage gap. Preliminary results show that differences in beliefs account for 60% of the reservation wage gap.
joint work with: Christine Braun
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