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Working paper

Wage and Employment Rates in New Zealand from 1991 to 2001 (WP 03/13)

Issue date: 
Sunday, 1 June 2003
View point: 
Publication category: 
JEL classification: 
J21 - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
J31 - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

Formats and related files

This paper presents results for five separately estimated sets of employment and wage equations.


This paper presents results for five separately estimated sets of employment and wage equations. The New Zealand working-age population is divided into sole parents, single men, single women, married men and married women. The results for the wage equations are as anticipated and similar to the results in other countries. A higher education level, living in a city and age (up to the early forties) increase the expected wage. Wages also differ significantly across industries and occupations. Employment follows the expected patterns as well, where women with children are less likely to be employed; education increases the employment probability; and living in remote areas decreases employment. In addition to the usual variables, unemployment affects the probability of employment negatively and a clear upward time trend is observed for sole parents, living with one’s parents decreases the employment probability of singles but increases the probability for sole parents, and eligibility for the New Zealand Superannuation seems relevant in the employment decision.


Thanks to New Zealand Treasury for funding this research. Access to the data used in this study was provided by Statistics New Zealand, under conditions designed to give effect to the confidentiality provisions of the Statistics Act 1975. We should also like to thank Ron Crawford, John Creedy, Melissa McKenzie, Tim Maloney, Ivan Tuckwell and participants of a seminar at the Treasury for their helpful comments. The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the Treasury or Statistics New Zealand.


The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the New Zealand Treasury. The paper is presented not as policy, but with a view to inform and stimulate wider debate.

Last updated: 
Tuesday, 30 October 2007