Wage Adjustment in the Great Recession
AbstractUsing 1979-2011 Current Population Survey data for the United States and 1975-2011 New Earnings Survey data for Great Britain, we study wage behavior in both countries, with particular attention to the Great Recession. Real wages are procyclical in both countries, but the procyclicality of real wages varies across recessions, and does so differently between the two countries. U.S. distributions of year-to-year nominal wage change show many workers reporting zero change (suggesting wage stickiness) and many reporting nominal reductions (suggesting wage flexibility), but both findings could be distorted by reporting error. The British data, which are based on employers’ payroll records, show much lower prevalence of zero wage change, but still show surprisingly frequent nominal wage cuts. The complex constellation of empirical regularities defies explanation by simple theories.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19478.
Date of creation: Sep 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Michael W. L. Elsby, Donggyun Shin, Gary Solon. "Wage Adjustment in the Great Recession," in Alexandre Mas and David Card, organizers, "The Labor Market in the Aftermath of the Great Recession" University of Chicago Press, Journal of Labor Economics (2014)
Note: EFG LS ME
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution
- E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
- J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
- J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-10-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-HME-2013-10-02 (Heterodox Microeconomics)
- NEP-LAB-2013-10-02 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-LMA-2013-10-02 (Labor Markets - Supply, Demand, & Wages)
- NEP-MAC-2013-10-02 (Macroeconomics)
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