IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ucp/jlabec/v9y1991i1p1-24.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Extent of Measurement Error in Longitudinal Earnings Data: Do Two Wrongs Make a Right?

Author

Listed:
  • Bound, John
  • Krueger, Alan B

Abstract

This article examines the properties and prevalence of measurement error in longitudinal earnings data. The analysis compares matched Current Population Survey data to administrative Social Security payroll tax records. In contrast to typically assumed properties of measurement error, the results indicate that errors are serially correlated over two years and negatively correlated with true earnings (i.e., mean reverting). In a cross section, the ratio of the variance of the signal to the total variance is 0.82 for men and 0.92 for women. These ratios fall to 0.65 and 0.81 when the data are specified in first differences. Longitudinal earnings data may be more reliable than previously believed. Copyright 1991 by University of Chicago Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Bound, John & Krueger, Alan B, 1991. "The Extent of Measurement Error in Longitudinal Earnings Data: Do Two Wrongs Make a Right?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(1), pages 1-24, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:v:9:y:1991:i:1:p:1-24
    DOI: 10.1086/298256
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/298256
    File Function: full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers. See http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JOLE for details.

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1086/298256?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Abowd, John M & Card, David, 1987. "Intertemporal Labor Supply and Long-term Employment Contracts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 50-68, March.
    2. Ashenfelter, Orley, 1984. "Macroeconomic analyses and microeconomic analyses of labor supply," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 117-156, January.
    3. Lillard, Lee & Smith, James P & Welch, Finis, 1986. "What Do We Really Know about Wages? The Importance of Nonreporting and Census Imputation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 489-506, June.
    4. repec:pri:indrel:dsp014m90dv50s is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Griliches, Zvi & Hausman, Jerry A., 1986. "Errors in variables in panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 93-118, February.
    6. Orley Ashenfelter, 1984. "Macroeconomic Analyses and Microeconomic Analyses of Labor Supply," Working Papers 553, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    7. Orley Ashenfelter & Gary Solon, 1982. "Longitudinal Labor Market Data: Sources, Uses, and Limitations," Working Papers 535, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    8. repec:fth:prinin:155 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Mellow, Wesley & Sider, Hal, 1983. "Accuracy of Response in Labor Market Surveys: Evidence and Implications," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(4), pages 331-344, October.
    10. Duncan, Greg J & Hill, Daniel H, 1985. "An Investigation of the Extent and Consequences of Measurement Error in Labor-Economic Survey Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 508-532, October.
    11. Altonji, Joseph G, 1986. "Intertemporal Substitution in Labor Supply: Evidence from Micro Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 176-215, June.
    12. Griliches, Zvi, 1974. "Errors in Variables and Other Unobservables," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 42(6), pages 971-998, November.
    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. John Bound & Charles Brown & Greg J. Duncan & Willard L. Rodgers, 1989. "Measurement Error In Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Labor Market Surveys: Results From Two Validation Studies," NBER Working Papers 2884, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Joshua D. Angrist, 1990. "Does Labor Supply Explain Fluctuations in Average Hours Worked?," NBER Working Papers 3312, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Gary Solon & Robert Barsky & Jonathan A. Parker, 1994. "Measuring the Cyclicality of Real Wages: How Important is Composition Bias?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(1), pages 1-25.
    4. Bollinger, Christopher R. & Hirsch, Barry & Hokayem, Charles M. & Ziliak, James P., 2018. "Trouble in the Tails? What We Know about Earnings Nonresponse Thirty Years after Lillard, Smith, and Welch," IZA Discussion Papers 11710, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. Robert B. Barsky & Gary Solon, 1989. "Real Wages Over The Business Cycle," NBER Working Papers 2888, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Laisney, François & Pohlmeier, Winfried & Staat, Matthias, 1991. "Estimation of labour supply functions using panel data: a survey," ZEW Discussion Papers 91-05, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    7. John Abowd & Martha Stinson, 2011. "Estimating Measurement Error in SIPP Annual Job Earnings: A Comparison of Census Bureau Survey and SSA Administrative Data," Working Papers 11-20, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    8. Lin, Dajun & Lutter, Randall & Ruhm, Christopher J., 2018. "Cognitive performance and labour market outcomes," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 121-135.
    9. Reeves, Aaron & McKee, Martin & Basu, Sanjay & Stuckler, David, 2014. "The political economy of austerity and healthcare: Cross-national analysis of expenditure changes in 27 European nations 1995–2011," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 1-8.
    10. Guilhem Bascle, 2008. "Controlling for endogeneity with instrumental variables in strategic management research," Post-Print hal-00576795, HAL.
    11. Santosh Anagol & Alvin Etang & Dean Karlan, 2017. "Continued Existence of Cows Disproves Central Tenets of Capitalism?," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65(4), pages 583-618.
    12. Mark B. Stewart & Joanna K. Swaffield, 2008. "The Other Margin: Do Minimum Wages Cause Working Hours Adjustments for Low‐Wage Workers?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 75(297), pages 148-167, February.
    13. Thomas J. Kniesner & W. Kip Viscusi & Christopher Woock & James P. Ziliak, 2012. "The Value of a Statistical Life: Evidence from Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 74-87, February.
    14. James P. Ziliak & Thomas J. Kniesner, 1999. "Estimating Life Cycle Labor Supply Tax Effects," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(2), pages 326-359, April.
    15. Martinez-Granado, Maite, 2005. "Testing labour supply and hours constraints," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 321-343, June.
    16. McLaughlin, Kenneth J., 1995. "Intertemporal substitution and [lambda]-constant comparative statics," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 193-213, February.
    17. Bryan, Gharad & Chowdhury, Shyamal & Mubarak, Ahmed Mushfig, 2013. "Escaping Famine through Seasonal Migration," Working Papers 124, Yale University, Department of Economics.
    18. Denyse L. Dagenais & Marcel Dagenais, 1995. "Higher Moment Estimators for Linear Regression Models With Errors in the Variables," CIRANO Working Papers 95s-13, CIRANO.
    19. Mark E. Schweitzer & Eric K. Severance-Lossin, 1996. "Rounding in earnings data," Working Papers (Old Series) 9612, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    20. John C. Ham & Kevin T. Reilly, 2013. "Implicit Contracts, Life Cycle Labor Supply, And Intertemporal Substitution," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 54, pages 1133-1158, November.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics
    • E0 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General

    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:ucp:jlabec:v:9:y:1991:i:1:p:1-24. 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://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JOLE .

    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: Journals Division (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JOLE .

    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.