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Okun coefficients and participation coefficients by age and gender

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  • Andrew Evans

    (Macquarie University)

Abstract

Estimates of the Okun coefficient are made for Australian workers grouped by age and gender using an unobserved components model. By analogy we define and estimate a participation coefficient which measures the cyclical response of the labour force participation rate to cyclical output shocks. The trend and cycle decomposition methodology used here leads to higher absolute estimates of the Okun coefficient than those typically found in the literature, although we find a pattern of variation in the coefficient by age and gender which is typical. We also find that, in aggregate, participating males in the middle age groups tend to stay in the labour force throughout the business cycle whereas females of the same age tend to participate procyclically. This has policy implications for attempts to increase the rate of participation of particular groups by age and gender following a cyclical downturn.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Evans, 2018. "Okun coefficients and participation coefficients by age and gender," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 7(1), pages 1-22, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:izalbr:v:7:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1186_s40172-018-0065-8
    DOI: 10.1186/s40172-018-0065-8
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    Cited by:

    1. Goto, Eiji & Bürgi, Constantin, 2021. "Sectoral Okun's law and cross-country cyclical differences," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 91-103.
    2. Luca Zanin, 2021. "On the estimation of Okun’s coefficient in some countries in Latin America: a comparison between OLS and GME estimators," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 60(3), pages 1575-1592, March.
    3. T. V. Blinova & V. A. Rusanovskii & V. A. Markov, 2021. "Estimating the Impact of Economic Fluctuations on Unemployment in Russian Regions Based on the Okun Model," Studies on Russian Economic Development, Springer, vol. 32(1), pages 103-110, January.
    4. Mindaugas Butkus & Kristina Matuzeviciute & Dovile Rupliene & Janina Seputiene, 2020. "Does Unemployment Responsiveness to Output Change Depend on Age, Gender, Education, and the Phase of the Business Cycle?," Economies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(4), pages 1-29, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Okun’s Law; Labour force participation; Trend and cycle decomposition;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure

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