Individuals who work in the same occupation as their spouse have significantly higher earnings on average than similar people whose spouses work in different occupations. For instance, a lawyer married to a lawyer makes more than an otherwise identical lawyer married to a physician or a teacher. The earnings effect associated with such “same-occupation marriages” is negative for less-educated men but positive for other groups and stronger for women than men. This effect holds throughout the last several decades in cross-sectional US data, and cannot be explained by hours worked, education, self-employment, or other observables.
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