Gender Roles and the Gender Expectations Gap

32 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2020

See all articles by Francesco D'Acunto

Francesco D'Acunto

Boston College

Ulrike Malmendier

University of California, Berkeley - Department of Economics; University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Michael Weber

University of Chicago - Finance

Multiple version iconThere are 4 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 2020

Abstract

Expectations about economic variables vary systematically across genders. In the domain of inflation, women have systematically higher expectations than men. We argue that traditional gender roles are a significant factor in generating this gender expectations gap as they expose women and men to different economic signals in their daily lives. Using unique data on the participation of men and women in

household grocery chores, their resulting exposure to price signals, and their inflation expectations, we document a tight link between the gender expectations gap and the distribution of grocery shopping duties. Since grocery prices are highly volatile, and consumers focus disproportionally on positive price changes, frequent exposure to grocery prices increases perceptions of current inflation and expectations of future inflation. We show that the gender expectations gap is largest in households whose female heads are solely responsible for grocery shopping, whereas no gap arises in households in which grocery shopping is split equally between men and women. We discuss how gender roles, through the gender expectations gap, can lead women to suboptimal economic choices.

Keywords: Expectations, Experiences, exposure, Gender Gap, Perceptions

JEL Classification: C90, D14, D84, E31, E52, G11

Suggested Citation

D'Acunto, Francesco and Malmendier, Ulrike and Weber, Michael, Gender Roles and the Gender Expectations Gap (June 2020). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP14932, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3638036

Francesco D'Acunto (Contact Author)

Boston College ( email )

140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States

Ulrike Malmendier

University of California, Berkeley - Department of Economics ( email )

549 Evans Hall #3880
Berkeley, CA 94720-3880
United States
(510) 642-8724 (Phone)
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HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.berkeley.edu/~ulrike/

University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

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Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

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HOME PAGE: http://www.iza.org/en/webcontent/personnel/photos/index_html?key=918

Michael Weber

University of Chicago - Finance ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

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