Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

The Mis-Measurement of Permanent Earnings: New Evidence from Social Security Earnings Data

Contents:

Author Info

  • Bhashkar Mazumder

Abstract

This study investigates the reliability of using short-term averages of earnings as a proxy for permanent earnings in empirical research. An earnings dynamics model is estimated on a large sample of men covering the period from 1983 to 1997 following the cohort-based methodology of Baker and Solon (1999). The analysis uses a unique dataset that matches men in the 1984, 1990 and 1996 Surveys of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) to the Social Security Administration’s Summary Earnings Records (SER). The results confirm that using a short-term average of earnings can lead to spurious estimates of the effect of lifetime earnings on a particular outcome. In addition, the transitory variance appears to vary considerably over the lifecycle. The share of earnings variance due to transitory factors is higher among blacks and the persistence of transitory shocks appears to be greater for this group as well. Finally, the transitory variance appears to be a more important factor in explaining the overall earnings variance of college educated men than those without college.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: ftp://ftp2.census.gov/ces/wp/2002/CES-WP-02-12.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau in its series Working Papers with number 02-12.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: May 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:02-12

Contact details of provider:
Postal: 4600 Silver Hill Road, Washington, DC 20233
Phone: (301) 763-6460
Fax: (301) 763-5935
Email:
Web page: http://www.census.gov/ces
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: CES; economic; research; micro; data; microdata; chief; economist;

Other versions of this item:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Bound, John & Krueger, Alan B, 1991. "The Extent of Measurement Error in Longitudinal Earnings Data: Do Two Wrongs Make a Right?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(1), pages 1-24, January.
  2. Todd E. Clark, 1995. "Small sample properties of estimators of non-linear models of covariance structure," Research Working Paper 95-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  3. John M. Abowd & David Card, 1986. "On the Covariance Structure of Earnings and Hours Changes," NBER Working Papers 1832, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Bhashkar Mazumder, 2001. "Earnings mobility in the US: a new look at intergenerational inequality," Working Paper Series WP-01-18, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  5. Altonji, Joseph G & Segal, Lewis M, 1996. "Small-Sample Bias in GMM Estimation of Covariance Structures," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 14(3), pages 353-66, July.
  6. David Card, 1990. "Intertemporal Labor Supply: An Assessment," Working Papers 649, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  7. Grawe, Nathan D., 2006. "Lifecycle bias in estimates of intergenerational earnings persistence," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(5), pages 551-570, October.
  8. Stephen V. Cameron & James J. Heckman, 2001. "The Dynamics of Educational Attainment for Black, Hispanic, and White Males," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(3), pages 455-499, June.
  9. Grawe, Nathan D., 2003. "Life Cycle Bias in the Estimation of Intergenerational Earnings Persistence," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2003207e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  10. Miles Corak & Andrew Heisz, 1999. "The Intergenerational Earnings and Income Mobility of Canadian Men: Evidence from Longitudinal Income Tax Data," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(3), pages 504-533.
  11. David M. Blau, 1999. "The Effect Of Income On Child Development," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(2), pages 261-276, May.
  12. Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 1994. "The Growth of Earnings Instability in the U.S. Labor Market," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(2), pages 217-272.
  13. Jacob Mincer, 1991. "Human Capital, Technology, and the Wage Structure: What Do Time Series Show?," NBER Working Papers 3581, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Steven Haider & Gary Solon, 2006. "Life-Cycle Variation in the Association between Current and Lifetime Earnings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1308-1320, September.
  2. Bhashkar Mazumder & Jonathan Davis, 2011. "Parental Earnings and Children's Well-Being and Future Success: An Analysis of the SIPP Matched to SSA Earnings Data," Working Papers 11-12, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  3. Jesse Rothstein & Nathan Wozny, 2011. "Permanent Income and the Black-White Test Score Gap," NBER Working Papers 17610, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Lindquist, Matthew J. & Böhlmark, Anders, 2005. "Life-Cycle Variations in the Association between Current and Lifetime Income: Country, Cohort and Gender Comparisons," Working Paper Series 4/2005, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
  5. Nilsen, Øivind Anti & Vaage, Kjell & Aakvik, Arild & Jacobsen, Karl, 2008. "Estimates of Intergenerational Elasticities Based on Lifetime Earnings," IZA Discussion Papers 3709, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Brenner, Jan, 2010. "Life-cycle variations in the association between current and lifetime earnings: Evidence for German natives and guest workers," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 392-406, April.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:02-12. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Fariha Kamal).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.