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2014 Conference

April 9–11, 2014

Intercontinental, Milwaukee, WI

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Older Women in the Labor Force: Does Human Capital Matter?

Thursday, April 10, 2014 at 11:45 AM–12:45 PM CDT
Short Abstract


Using data from the 2008 Rand Health and Retirement Study (HRS), the objectives of this study were to understand women’s employment in later life and to investigate the effects of women’s education and occupation category on their employment in later life. Out of 5,087 women aged 65 or older, 8.8% were working in the labor force.  The descriptive results show that among older women in the labor force, 56.9% of the sample women were working in the service industry, while 31.9% and 13.3% were working in the profession/managerial and labor intensive industry, respectively. The logit results indicate that all else being equal, education and occupation were significant predictors of women’s employment in later life.  This study found that less educated women were more likely to work in the labor force later in life than women with a college degree. On the other hand, women with professional/managerial occupations were more likely to be employed later in life, as compared to women with labor intensive occupation. Other than education and occupation variables, age, job tenure, household income, marital status, race, and health status significantly influenced the likelihood of older women’s participation in the labor force. The findings of this study suggest that women aged 65 and older in the labor force tended to be healthier, single unmarried, non-White, and have higher household income than women who were not working in the labor force.  

First & Corresponding Author

Yoon Lee, PhD, Utah State University

Add'l Authors In The Order To Be Printed