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Inter- and Intra-Household Earnings Differentials among Homosexual and Heterosexual Couples


  • Ali M. Ahmed is at Linnaeus University and the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study. Lina Andersson and Mats Hammarstedt are at Linnaeus University.


We present earnings differentials between homosexuals and heterosexuals. In line with previous research, we find that gay males earn less than heterosexual males, and that lesbians earn more than heterosexual females. However, when combining the individuals into households, our results are strikingly different: very small earnings differentials between gay households and heterosexual households are found. Lesbian households earn considerably less. The largest earnings inequalities between spouses are found among gay males followed by heterosexuals. Studying sexual orientation and earnings is complex, and household earnings have to be taken into consideration when conclusions are drawn.