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Unemployment, Participation and Worker Flows Over the Life-Cycle

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  • Sekyu Choi
  • Alexandre Janiak
  • Benjamín Villena-Roldán

Abstract

We estimate and report life-cycle transition probabilities between employment, unemployment and inactivity for male and female workers using Current Population Survey monthly files. We assess the relative importance of each probability in explaining the life-cycle profiles of participation and unemployment rates using a novel decomposition method. A key robust finding is that most differences in participation and unemployment over the life-cycle can be attributed to the probability of leaving employment and the probability of transiting from inactivity to unemployment, while transitions from unemployment to employment (the job finding probability) play secondary roles. We conclude that search models that seek to explain life-cycle work patterns should not ignore transitions to and from inactivity.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 617.

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Date of creation: Mar 2012
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:617

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Keywords: life-cycle; unemployment; participation; worker flows;

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  1. Morten O. Ravn, 2008. "The Consumption-Tightness Puzzle," NBER Chapters, in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2006, pages 9-63 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Chéron, Arnaud & Hairault, Jean-Olivier & Langot, François, 2008. "Life-Cycle Equilibrium Unemployment," IZA Discussion Papers 3396, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Per Krusell & Toshihiko Mukoyama & Richard Rogerson & Aysegul Sahin, 2008. "Aggregate Implications of Indivisible Labor, Incomplete Markets, and Labor Market Frictions," NBER Working Papers 13871, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Fernando Alvarez & Marcelo Veracierto, 1999. "Labor market policies in an equilibrium search model," Working Paper Series WP-99-10, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  5. Alexandre Janiak & Paulo Santos Monteiro, 2010. "Labor force heterogeneity: implications for the relation between aggregate volatility and government size," Documentos de Trabajo 272, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  6. Marcelo Veracierto, 2002. "On the cyclical behavior of employment, unemployment and labor force participation," Working Paper Series WP-02-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  7. Ludo Visschers & Irina A. Telyukova & Guido Menzio, 2010. "Directed Search over the Life Cycle," 2010 Meeting Papers 185, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Gary Solon & Ryan Michaels & Michael W. L. Elsby, 2009. "The Ins and Outs of Cyclical Unemployment," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 84-110, January.
  9. Gary D. Hansen & Selahattin Imrohoroglu, 2006. "Consumption Over the Life Cycle: The Role of Annuities," NBER Working Papers 12341, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Shigeru Fujita & Garey Ramey, 2007. "The cyclicality of separation and job finding rates," Working Papers 07-19, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  11. Pietro Garibaldi & Etienne Wasmer, 2005. "Equilibrium Search Unemployment, Endogenous Participation and Labor Market Flows," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/8921, Sciences Po.
  12. Abowd, John M & Zellner, Arnold, 1985. "Estimating Gross Labor-Force Flows," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 3(3), pages 254-83, June.
  13. Pries, Michael & Rogerson, Richard, 2009. "Search frictions and labor market participation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(5), pages 568-587, July.
  14. Jean-Olivier Hairault & Francois Langot & Thepthida Sopraseuth, 2010. "Distance to Retirement and Older Workers' Employment: The Case for Delaying the Retirement Age," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 8(5), pages 1034-1076, 09.
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Cited by:
  1. Sekyu Choi, 2013. "On Households and Unemployment," 2013 Meeting Papers 992, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Hairault, Jean-Olivier & Langot, François & Sopraseuth, Thepthida, 2014. "Why is Old Workers' Labor Market More Volatile? Unemployment Fluctuations over the Life-Cycle," IZA Discussion Papers 8076, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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