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    • Abstract:
      This article focuses on a case study which examined the sex-related earnings differentials in the beauty industry. Earning differentials between males and females are not yet well understood. Two central issues remain unresolved. It is not clear how much of the differential is attributable to pure discrimination, and how much is due to differences in net productivities. Nor, to the extent that wage differentials do in part reflect differing productivities, is there an adequate account of the sources of these differences. The first problem in understanding the male/female earnings differential can be simply put. Sex discrimination can produce male/female wage differentials. Thus testing propositions about earnings discrimination in most industries typically requires a long and somewhat ad hoc series of statistical adjustments of earnings data. Most beauty shops operate on a one-class service basis, charging one flat fee for each service. Tips and wages are proportional to charges. This flat organization eliminates the internal labor market, thus drastically reducing the premium for seniority and experience per se. Two characteristics of a beautician's product are relevant here. First, its quality is immediately apparent and easily attributable to one particular worker. Second, its production requires little or no shop-specific training.