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Labor Informality in Latin America and the Caribbean: Patterns and Trends from Household Survey Microdata

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  • Gasparini Leonardo

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  • Leonardo Tornaroli

Abstract

This paper documents the main patterns and trends of alternative definitions of labor informality in Latin America and the Caribbean, by exploiting a large database of more than 100 household surveys covering the period 1989-2005. The evidence suggests that there are no signs of a consistent pattern of reduction in labor informality in the region. Regardless of the definition used, labor informality remains a pervasive characteristic of labor markets in LAC. In several countries the increase in labor informality seems to have been associated more to a sizeable increase in the propensity to set informal arrangements within groups, than to changes in the national employment structure toward more informal sectors.

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File URL: http://economia.uniandes.edu.co/revistadys/63/01_Labor.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE in its journal REVISTA DESARROLLO Y SOCIEDAD.

Volume (Year): (2009)
Issue (Month): ()
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Handle: RePEc:col:000090:005860

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Keywords: Informality; employment; Latinamerican; Caribean; Labor Market;

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  1. Norbert Fiess & Marco fugazza & William Maloney, 2002. "Exchange Rate Appreciations, Labor Market Rigidities, and Informality," Working Papers 2005_15, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow.
  2. Maloney, William, 2003. "Informality revisited," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2965, The World Bank.
  3. Maloney, William F, 1999. "Does Informality Imply Segmentation in Urban Labor Markets? Evidence from Sectoral Transitions in Mexico," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 13(2), pages 275-302, May.
  4. L. C. Gasparini, 2002. "Microeconometric decompositions of aggregate variables: an application to labour informality in Argentina," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(18), pages 2257-2266.
  5. Guha-Khasnobis, Basudeb & Kanbur, Ravi & Ostrom, Elinor, 2006. "Beyond Formality and Informality," Working Papers 127038, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  6. Gasparini Leonardo & Leonardo Tornaroli, 2009. "Labor Informality in Latin America and the Caribbean: Patterns and Trends from Household Survey Microdata," REVISTA DESARROLLO Y SOCIEDAD, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  7. Friedrich Schneider & Dominik Enste, 2000. "Shadow Economies Around the World," IMF Working Papers 00/26, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Pradhan, M.P. & Soest, A.H.O. van, 1993. "Formal and informal sector employment in urban areas of Bolivia," Discussion Paper 1993-11, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  9. James J. Heckman & Lance J. Lochner & Petra E. Todd, 2003. "Fifty Years of Mincer Earnings Regressions," NBER Working Papers 9732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Jaime Saavedra & Alberto Chong, 1999. "Structural reform, institutions and earnings: Evidence from the formal and informal sectors in urban Peru," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(4), pages 95-116.
  11. Portes, Alejandro & Blitzer, Silvia & Curtis, John, 1986. "The urban informal sector in Uruguay: Its internal structure, characteristics, and effects," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 14(6), pages 727-741, June.
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