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Labor Force Participation and Educational Attainment in the United States

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  • Joseph S. Falzone

    () (Peirce College)

Abstract

Abstract The objectives of this paper are twofold. Aggregate labor force participation rates in the United States are described focusing on educational attainment. A model is developed for decomposing aggregate labor force participation rates for men and women from 1994 to 2014 from a unique perspective by focusing on changes in educational attainment and on changes in the labor force behavior. The findings presented here indicate that men’s aggregate labor force participation rates declined during the 20-year period at all levels of educational attainment, due primarily to changes in population shares. A different picture emerges regarding women. For women with high school or some college or associate degree, it was changes in labor force behavior that dominated changing aggregate labor force participation rates. For women with the lowest and highest levels of educational attainment, less than high school or at least a baccalaureate degree, it was changes in their population shares that drove changes in aggregate labor force participation rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Joseph S. Falzone, 2017. "Labor Force Participation and Educational Attainment in the United States," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 23(3), pages 321-332, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:iaecre:v:23:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11294-017-9646-8
    DOI: 10.1007/s11294-017-9646-8
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tammy Schirle, 2008. "Why Have the Labor Force Participation Rates of Older Men Increased since the Mid-1990s?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(4), pages 549-594, October.
    2. Julie L. Hotchkiss, 2009. "Changes in the aggregate labor force participation rate," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    3. Bruce C. Fallick & Jonathan F. Pingle, 2006. "A cohort-based model of labor force participation," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2007-09, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US), revised 2006.
    4. Richard Chapman & Kevin Duncan & Jerry Gray, 1998. "Mixing Welfare and Work: Evidence from the PSID, 1980-87," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 24(1), pages 51-62, Winter.
    5. David M. Blau & Ryan M. Goodstein, 2010. "Can Social Security Explain Trends in Labor Force Participation of Older Men in the United States?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 45(2).
    6. Riccardo DiCecio & Michael T. Owyang & Christopher H. Wheeler & Kristie M. Engemann, 2008. "Changing trends in the labor force: a survey," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue jan, pages 47-62.
    7. Willem Van Zandweghe, 2012. "Interpreting the recent decline in labor force participation," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue qi, pages 5-34.
    8. Julie L. Hotchkiss, 2009. "Decomposing changes in the aggregate labor force participation rate," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2009-06, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor force participation; Labor market; Demographic trends;

    JEL classification:

    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure

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