The subjective assessment of personal income, insofar as it reflects or sheds light upon the (potentially different) economic incentive structures facing workers of different demographic groups, has far-reaching implications for public policy and private decision-making alike. This paper explores the impact of personal income on financial satisfaction and on perceived income, focusing on demographic differences across the following groups: white males, black males, white females and black females. The results indicate that different race/gender pairs do respond to income differently. For both financial satisfaction and perceived relative income, white females, black females and black males all have lower returns to personal income than do white males. White males, in other words, appear to reap more “bang for the buck” in terms of both of the outcome variables, even after a host of control variables are introduced. The possibility that social comparison among (racial and gender) ingroups is driving the observed demographic differences is discussed.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/david_depianto/4/