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Job changes, hours changes and labour market flexibility: panel data evidence for Britain

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Author Info

  • Richard Blundell

    ()
    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London)

  • Mike Brewer

    ()
    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and ISER, Essex University)

  • Marco Francesconi

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and ISER, Essex University)

Abstract

This study uses the first twelve waves of the British Household Panel Survey covering the period 1991-2002 to investigate the extent of constraints on desired hours of work within jobs and the degree of flexibility of the labour market for a sample of women. Our main findings are as follows. First, the largest movements in hours worked are observed for workers who change their jobs. Second, about 40 percent of the women in the sample are not putting in the hours they would like. Most of them (mainly full-timers) would like to work fewer hours at the prevailing hourly wage. Again, women who change job experience the greatest hours changes, especially if they are over- or under-employed. Third, there is evidence of hours constraints. The hours movements among quitters are up to 5 hours greater than the movements among stayers. Fourth, we do not detect systematic time trends in the relationship between hours changes and job changes. But there is some evidence that overemployed women find it increasingly more difficult to move towards their desired hours even after changing job. Fifth, the evidence on a flexible labour market is mixed. We find only partial support for the hypothesis that overemployed or underemployed quitters receive compensating wage differentials if the new job does not satisfy their hours preferences, as well as for the hypothesis that quitters get a wage premium when they end up moving to jobs that constraint their desired hours.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for Fiscal Studies in its series IFS Working Papers with number W05/12.

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Length: 63 pp.
Date of creation: Jul 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:05/12

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Related research

Keywords: Job mobility; Hours constraints; Labour supply preferences; Hours-wage trade-off; Part-time employment.;

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References

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  1. Barzel, Yoram, 1973. "The Determination of Daily Hours and Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 220-38, May.
  2. Marco Francesconi, 2002. "A Joint Dynamic Model of Fertility and Work of Married Women," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(2), pages 336-380, Part.
  3. Booth, Alison L & Jenkins, Stephen P & Serrano, Carlos, 1997. "New Men and New Women? A Comparison of Paid Work Propensities from a Panel Data Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 1775, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Blundell, Richard & Macurdy, Thomas, 1999. "Labor supply: A review of alternative approaches," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 27, pages 1559-1695 Elsevier.
  5. Lundberg, Shelly J, 1985. "Tied Wage-Hours Offers and the Endogeneity of Wages," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(3), pages 405-10, August.
  6. Rosen, Harvey S, 1976. "Taxes in a Labor Supply Model with Joint Wage-Hours Determination," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(3), pages 485-507, May.
  7. Audrey Light & Kathleen McGarry, 1998. "Job Change Patterns And The Wages Of Young Men," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(2), pages 276-286, May.
  8. Shulamit Kahn & Kevin Lang, 1988. "The Effects of Hours Constraints on Labor Supply Estimates," NBER Working Papers 2647, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Blank, Rebecca M, 1989. "The Role of Part-Time Work in Women's Labor Market Choices over Time," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(2), pages 295-99, May.
  10. Ham, John C, 1982. "Estimation of a Labour Supply Model with Censoring Due to Unemployment and Underemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(3), pages 335-54, July.
  11. Alison L. Booth & Marco Francesconi & Carlos Garcia-Serrano, 1999. "Job tenure and job mobility in Britain," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 53(1), pages 43-70, October.
  12. Biddle, Jeff E & Zarkin, Gary A, 1989. "Choice among Wage-Hours Packages: An Empirical Investigation of Male Labor Supply," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(4), pages 415-37, October.
  13. Rosen, Sherwin, 1987. "The theory of equalizing differences," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 12, pages 641-692 Elsevier.
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Cited by:
  1. Cyrus Farsian, 2011. "The Fallacy of Composition Bias in the RealWage Cyclicality Puzzle," Studies in Economics 1116, Department of Economics, University of Kent.

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