DP1775 | New Men and New Women? A Comparison of Paid Work Propensities from a Panel Data Perspective

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The paper uses BHPS waves 1?5 (1991?5) to compare paid work participation rates of men and women. Year-on-year persistence in paid work propensities is high, but greater for men than women. Non-work persistence is higher for women. Using panel data probit regression models, the paper also investigates why men?s and women?s participation rates differ, comparing the roles of differences in observable characteristics and differences in rates of return to these characteristics, while also controlling for unobserved heterogeneity. Most of the difference in participation rates is accounted for by the differences in returns associated with the presence of children, especially young ones.