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Older male labour force participation: the role of social security and hidden unemployment


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  • Martin J. O’Brien

    (University of Newcastle)

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    This paper examines the role played by social security provisions and hidden unemployment in influencing trends in older male labour force participation in Australia. The paper concludes that labour demand constraints have been the dominant explanatory force behind the decline in older male labour force participation rates over recent decades in Australia. The results presented in the paper challenge the consensus developed in previous Australian studies that labour supply incentives have been the primary force influencing movements in older male labour force participation rates. Furthermore, various estimates of older male hidden unemployment presented in the paper suggest that potentially large unemployment rates are concealed beneath relatively modest 'official' recorded estimates. The findings presented in the paper challenge the supply side policy stance toward older workers' labour force participation adopted for an ageing society setting.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School in its journal Australian Journal of Labour Economics.

    Volume (Year): 4 (2000-2001)
    Issue (Month): 3 (September)
    Pages: 206-223

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    Handle: RePEc:ozl:journl:v:4:y:2001:i:3:p:206-223

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    Related research

    Keywords: Labor Force and Employment; Size; and Structure (by Industry; Occupation; Demographic Characteristics; etc.) Retirement; Retirement Policies National Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs;

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    Cited by:
    1. O'Brien, Martin, 2004. "Hidden Unemployment and Older Male Workers," Economics Working Papers wp04-02, School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia.
    2. O'Brien, Martin, 2005. "Older Male Workers and Job Mobility in Australia," Economics Working Papers wp05-04, School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia.
    3. Jeff Borland, 2005. "Transitions to Retirement: A Review," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2005n03, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.


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