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The measurement of unemployment using completed durations: evidence on the gender gap in unemployment in France

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  • Stephen Bazen

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  • Xavier Joutard
  • Mouhamadou Niang

Abstract

This paper examines how unemployment can be measured in a normative fashion - taking into account the mean and inequality of spell lengths - and how the extent of unemployment can be estimated from cross section data of the type found in labour force surveys. The issue is not straightforward since in these surveys completed durations of unemployed individuals are not observed yet they constitute the basis for calculating the kind of index that has been proposed to measure the extent of unemployment in a way that goes beyond the unemployment rate. The index proposed by Shorrocks has robust normative foundations and has an equivalent representation in terms of average complete duration and the density of completed durations. Building upon earlier work applied in the United States for estimating the average completed duration, we present a method that enables the index to be calculated based on an estimate of the density of completed durations. The approach is illustrated in the context of comparing male-female unemployment differences in France, where historically female unemployment has been higher than that of males. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Suggested Citation

  • Stephen Bazen & Xavier Joutard & Mouhamadou Niang, 2014. "The measurement of unemployment using completed durations: evidence on the gender gap in unemployment in France," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 12(4), pages 517-534, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jecinq:v:12:y:2014:i:4:p:517-534
    DOI: 10.1007/s10888-013-9267-2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin Riese & K. Brunner, 1998. "Measuring the severity of unemployment," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 67(2), pages 167-180, June.
    2. Ghazala Azmat & Maia Güell & Alan Manning, 2006. "Gender Gaps in Unemployment Rates in OECD Countries," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(1), pages 1-38, January.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Bazen, Stephen & Joutard, Xavier & Magdalou, Brice, 2017. "An Oaxaca decomposition for nonlinear models," Journal of Economic and Social Measurement, IOS Press, issue 2, pages 101-121.
    2. Eliana Viviano & Andrea Brandolini, 2018. "Measuring employment and unemployment," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 445-445, August.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Unemployment measurement; Completed duration; Synthetic cohort; Gender gap; J64; C41; D63;

    JEL classification:

    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • C41 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Duration Analysis; Optimal Timing Strategies
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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