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A New Picture Of Swedish Earnings Inequality: Persistent And Transitory Components, 1960-1990

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  • Magnus Gustavsson

Abstract

Using a large individual longitudinal database, I decompose the cross-sectional variance of male annual earnings in Sweden between 1960 and 1990 into persistent and transitory components. The persistent variance displays a downward trend during the whole sample period, but with the rate of decline more rapid up until the early 1980s than afterwards. The transitory variance has increased from 1960 until the early 1970s, decreased slightly until the late 1970s, and then risen again during the second half of the 1980s. An important lesson from these results concern the interpretation of the rise in cross-sectional inequality observed after the 1983 breakdown of centralized bargaining in Sweden. While it has often been presumed that this growth reflected increased returns to skills, this study shows that it was in fact due to increased transitory earnings fluctuations. Copyright 2008 The Author. Journal compilation 2008 International Association for Research in Income and Wealth Published.

Suggested Citation

  • Magnus Gustavsson, 2008. "A New Picture Of Swedish Earnings Inequality: Persistent And Transitory Components, 1960-1990," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 54(3), pages 324-349, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:54:y:2008:i:3:p:324-349
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Cecilia García-Peñalosa & Elsa Orgiazzi, 2013. "Factor Components of Inequality: A Cross-Country Study," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 59(4), pages 689-727, December.
    2. Aedín Doris & Donal O’Neill & Olive Sweetman, 2013. "Identification of the covariance structure of earnings using the GMM estimator," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 11(3), pages 343-372, September.
    3. Giesecke, Matthias & Bönke, Timm & Lüthen, Holger, 2011. "The Dynamics of Earnings in Germany: Evidence from Social Security Records," Annual Conference 2011 (Frankfurt, Main): The Order of the World Economy - Lessons from the Crisis 48692, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    4. Cecilia Garcia Peñalosa & Orgiazzi, E., 2011. "GINI DP 12: Factor Components of Inequality. A Cross-Country Study," GINI Discussion Papers 12, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.
    5. Gustavsson, Magnus & Österholm, Pär, 2014. "Does the labor-income process contain a unit root? Evidence from individual-specific time series," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 152-167.
    6. Charles M. Beach & Ross Finnie & David Gray, 2010. "Long-Run Inequality And Short-Run Instability Of Men'S And Women'S Earnings In Canada," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 56(3), pages 572-596, September.
    7. Otto Kässi, 2014. "Earnings dynamics of men and women in Finland: permanent inequality versus earnings instability," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 46(2), pages 451-477, March.
    8. Stephen Jenkins & Peter Lambert, 2011. "Robert Moffitt and Peter Gottschalk’s 1995 paper ‘Trends in the covariance structure of earnings in the US: 1969–1987’," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 9(3), pages 433-437, September.
    9. Erixon, Lennart, 2011. "Under the influence of traumatic events, new ideas, economic experts and the ICT revolution - the economic policy and macroeconomic performance of Sweden in the 1990s and 2000s," Research Papers in Economics 2011:25, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
    10. Merike Kukk & Dmitry Kulikov & Karsten Staehr, 2016. "Estimating Consumption Responses to Income Shocks of Different Persistence Using Self-Reported Income Measures," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 62(2), pages 311-333, June.

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