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Master's Professional Reports Abstract

Earnings Inequality in the United States Economy 1939-1999 : A Comparison of Alternative Measures
Bradford, Peter Pinkney Starnes.
REPORT 1999 B72756 Public Affairs Library

Current national measures of inequality are subjective, inconsistent from year to year, and not detailed enough to draw policy conclusions. This report presents a robust method for accessing wage and employment data from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, sifting to obtain the most disaggregated and detailed data, then calculating two objective measures of inequality: Theil's T statistic and a unique wage structure-derived Gini Index. Values for the Theil and wage structure Gini are shown for the years from 1939 to 1999. A computer program is included in the Appendix as a data analysis tool for other researchers.