SF Fed Newsletter

Learn more about what’s happening in the Twelfth District

Economic Letter

How Much Do Work Interruptions Reduce Mothers’ Wages?

Women experience large and persistent declines in earnings after having children, which in part reflects fewer hours worked while children are young. Recent studies of large policy-induced changes in mothers’ work experience in the 1990s quantify the impact of avoiding lengthy work interruptions after childbirth. Mothers returning to work a year sooner earn 5-6% higher wages 10 to 20 years later.

The SF Fed’s Commitment to Equity

The San Francisco Fed is dedicated to building an economy that works for everyone and helping ensure all Americans—regardless of gender, race or ethnicity, geography, ability, or socio-economic status—have the opportunity to fully realize their potential.