IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/aea/jecper/v11y1997i2p117-36.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Growth of Temporary Services Work

Author

Listed:
  • Lewis M. Segal
  • Daniel G. Sullivan

Abstract

Temporary services employment grew rapidly over the past several decades and now accounts for a sizable fraction of aggregate employment. The authors use Current Population Survey data to examine the changing nature of temporary work and discuss explanations for its growth. Temps are no longer overwhelmingly female or limited to clerical occupations. They have less labor market security than permanent workers, being prone to more unemployment and more underemployment. Few, however, are in temp positions a year later and the majority transition to permanent employment. Temp wages are approximately 20 percent below permanent workers, but individual and job characteristics explain approximately two-thirds of the gap.

Suggested Citation

  • Lewis M. Segal & Daniel G. Sullivan, 1997. "The Growth of Temporary Services Work," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 117-136, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:11:y:1997:i:2:p:117-36
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.11.2.117
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/jep.11.2.117
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. McKinley L. Blackburn & David E. Bloom & Richard B. Freeman, 1989. "The Declining Economic Position of Less-Skilled American Males," NBER Working Papers 3186, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Brian Motley, 1996. "Recent developments in labor force participation," FRBSF Economic Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue may24.
    3. Garth Mangum & Donald Mayall & Kristin Nelson, 1985. "The Temporary Help Industry: A Response to the Dual Internal Labor Market," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 38(4), pages 599-611, July.
    4. Donald S. Allen, 1995. "Changes in inventory management and the business cycle," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 17-26.
    5. Freeman, Richard B, 1984. "Longitudinal Analyses of the Effects of Trade Unions," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(1), pages 1-26, January.
    6. Alan B. Krueger, 1991. "The Evolution of Unjust-Dismissal Legislation in the United States," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 44(4), pages 644-660, July.
    7. Krueger, Alan B & Summers, Lawrence H, 1988. "Efficiency Wages and the Inter-industry Wage Structure," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 259-293, March.
    8. Thomas H. Klier, 1996. "Assessing the Midwest economy--a longer view," Chicago Fed Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Jul.
    9. Lawrence F. Katz, 1986. "Efficiency Wage Theories: A Partial Evaluation," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1986, Volume 1, pages 235-290, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Finis Welch, 1993. "Matching the Current Population Surveys," Stata Technical Bulletin, StataCorp LP, vol. 2(12).
    11. Abraham, Katharine G & Taylor, Susan K, 1996. "Firms' Use of Outside Contractors: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(3), pages 394-424, July.
    12. Lewis M. Segal & Daniel G. Sullivan, 1995. "The temporary labor force," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, vol. 19(Mar), pages 2-19.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. David H. Autor, 2000. "Outsourcing at Will: Unjust Dismissal Doctrine and the Growth of Temporary Help Employment," NBER Working Papers 7557, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Susan N. Houseman, 2001. "Why Employers Use Flexible Staffing Arrangements: Evidence from an Establishment Survey," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 55(1), pages 149-170, October.
    3. Arindrajit Dube & Ethan Kaplan, 2010. "Does Outsourcing Reduce Wages in the Low-Wage Service Occupations? Evidence from Janitors and Guards," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 63(2), pages 287-306, January.
    4. Alan B. Krueger, 1988. "Are Public Sector Workers Paid More Than Their Alternative Wage? Evidence from Longitudinal Data and Job Queues," NBER Chapters, in: When Public Sector Workers Unionize, pages 217-242, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. David H. Autor, 2001. "Why Do Temporary Help Firms Provide Free General Skills Training?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1409-1448.
    6. Huang, Tzu-Ling & Hallam, Arne & Orazem, Peter & Paterno, Elizabeth M., 1998. "Empirical Tests of Efficiency Wage Models," Staff General Research Papers Archive 1325, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    7. Cahill, Miles B., 2000. "Exploring the interaction between efficiency wages and labor market frictions," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 121-137.
    8. Shea, John, 2000. "Does parents' money matter?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 155-184, August.
    9. Robert Gibbons & Lawrence Katz, 1992. "Does Unmeasured Ability Explain Inter-Industry Wage Differentials?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(3), pages 515-535.
    10. Christophe Muller & Christophe Nordman, 2005. "Human capital and wages in two leading industries in Tunisia: evidence from matched worker-firm data," Brussels Economic Review, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles, vol. 48(1-2), pages 183-208.
    11. Till von Wachter & Elizabeth Handwerker & Andrew Hildreth, 2009. "Estimating the "True" Cost of Job Loss: Evidence Using Matched Data from Califormia 1991-2000," Working Papers 09-14, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    12. Bhaskar, V. & To, Ted, 2003. "Oligopsony and the distribution of wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 371-399, April.
    13. LLUIS, Stéphanie, 2001. "Wage Policy of Firms: an Empirical Investigation," Cahiers de recherche 2001-18, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
    14. Alan B. Krueger & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Efficiency Wages and the Wage Structure," NBER Working Papers 1952, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Jaylson Jair da Silveira & Gilberto Tadeu Lima, 2016. "Effort Elicitation, Wage Differentials and Income Distribution in A Wage-Led Growth Regime," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(1), pages 44-75, February.
    16. David Card & Ana Rute Cardoso & Joerg Heining & Patrick Kline, 2018. "Firms and Labor Market Inequality: Evidence and Some Theory," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(S1), pages 13-70.
    17. Christophe Muller & Christophe Nordman, 2004. "Which Human Capital Matters For Rich And Poor'S Wages: Evidence From Matched Worker-Firm Data From Tunisia," Working Papers. Serie AD 2004-28, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
    18. Marcello Estevao & Saul Lach, 1999. "Measuring temporary labor outsourcing in U.S. manufacturing," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-57, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    19. Seref Saygili, 1998. "Is the Efficiency Wage Hypothesis Valid for Developing Countries? Evidence from the Turkish Cement Industry," Studies in Economics 9810, School of Economics, University of Kent.
    20. Rebekka Christopoulou & Vassilis Monastiriotis, 2018. "Did the crisis make the Greek economy less inefficient? Evidence from the structure and dynamics of sectoral premia," GreeSE – Hellenic Observatory Papers on Greece and Southeast Europe 125, Hellenic Observatory, LSE.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:11:y:1997:i:2:p:117-36. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/aeaaaea.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Michael P. Albert (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/aeaaaea.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.