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Is Job Stability in the United States Falling?

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Author Info

  • Jaeger, David A.

    ()
    (CUNY Graduate Center)

  • Stevens, Ann Huff

    (affiliation not available)

Abstract

Documenting trends in job stability over the past twenty-five years has become a controversial exercise. The two main sources of information on employer tenure, the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) and the Current Population Survey (CPS), have generally given different pictures of the degree of job stability in the U.S. economy. This paper examines whether the PSID and CPS yield systematically different results with respect to comparable measures of job stability. Both data sets show an increase in the fraction of male workers aged 30 and over with tenure less than ten years beginning in the late 1980s. There is little evidence in either data set of a trend in the share of employed individuals with one year or less of tenure. The two data sets provide nearly identical results for the 1980s and 90s while in the 1970s they give results that are somewhat less comparable. We argue that this is probably the result of changes in the CPS tenure question following the 1981 survey. The effects of this change and the choice of ending year and variable definition in PSID-based studies are the most likely explanations for the disparate findings in the literature.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 35.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: Mar 1999
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Labor Economics, 1999, 17 (s4), S1-S28; see IZA Reprints 28/00
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp35

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Keywords: U.S.economy; job stability;

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References

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  1. James G. MacKinnon & Halbert White, 1983. "Some Heteroskedasticity Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimators with Improved Finite Sample Properties," Working Papers, Queen's University, Department of Economics 537, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. H. J. Holzer & R. J. LaLonde, . "Job Change and Job Stability among Less-Skilled Young Workers," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1191-99, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  2. José María Arranz & Carlos García-Serrano, . "¿Qué Ha Sucedido Con La Estabilidad Del Empleo En España?. Un Análisis Desagregado Con Datos De La Epa: 1987-2003(*)," Working Papers 4-04 Classification-JEL :, Instituto de Estudios Fiscales.
  3. Alicia H. Munnell & Kelly Haverstick & Geoffrey Sanzenbacher, 2006. "Job Tenure and Pension Coverage," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2006-18, Center for Retirement Research, revised Oct 2006.
  4. Leonardi, Marco, 2003. "Earnings Instability of Job Stayers and Job Changers," IZA Discussion Papers 946, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Flabbi, Luca & Leonardi, Marco, 2008. "Sources of Earnings Instability: Estimates from an On-the-Job Search Model of the U.S. Labor Market," IZA Discussion Papers 3387, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Fligstein, Neil & Shin, Taek-Jin, 2003. "The shareholder value society: A review of the changes in working conditions and inequality in the U.S., 1976-2000," Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley qt0z85d717, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley.
  7. Ann Huff Stevens, 2005. "The More Things Change, The More They Stay the Same: Trends in Long-term Employment in the United States, 1969-2002," NBER Working Papers 11878, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Douglas Holtz-Eakin & Harvey S. Rosen & Robert Weathers, 2000. "Horatio Alger Meets the Mobility Tables," NBER Working Papers 7619, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Cappelli, Peter, 2004. "Why do employers pay for college?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 121(1-2), pages 213-241.
  10. Flabbi, Luca & Leonardi, Marco, 2010. "Sources of earnings inequality: Estimates from an on-the-job search model of the US labor market," European Economic Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 54(6), pages 832-854, August.
  11. John M. Fitzgerald, 1999. "Job Instability and Earnings and Income Consequences: Evidence from SIPP: 1983-1995," JCPR Working Papers, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research 99, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  12. Daniel Aaronson & Daniel G. Sullivan, 1998. "The decline of job security in the 1990s: displacement, anxiety, and their effect on wage growth," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q I, pages 17-43.
  13. Alicia H. Munnell & Steven Sass & Mauricio Soto & Natalia Zhivan, 2006. "Has the Displacement of Older Workers Increased?," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2006-17, Center for Retirement Research, revised Sep 2006.
  14. Robert E. Hall, 2005. "Job Loss, Job Finding, and Unemployment in the U.S. Economy Over the Past Fifty Years," NBER Working Papers 11678, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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