IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this book chapter or follow this series

Evolution of the Female Labour Force Participation Rate in Canada, 1976-1994: a Cohort Analysis

In: A Symposium on Canadian Labour Force Participation in the 1990s (Special Issue of Canadian Business Economics, Volume 7, Number 2, May 1999)

  • Paul Beaudry
  • Thomas Lemieux

The participation rate of women aged 25-64 rose greatly in the 1970s and 1980s, but has stagnated in the 1990s. In principle, this development could reflect either the poor growth performance of the economy this decade or the completion of the integration of women into the labour force. In the fourth article of this symposium, Paul Beaudry and Thomas Lemieux use a cohort analysis to shed light on the explanation of this stagnation in female labour force participation. Using data from the Survey of Consumer Finances for the 1976-94 period, the authors track the participation rates over time of representative groups of women who entered the labour force at different points in time. They decompose a cohort’s participation rate into three effects: a macroeconomic effect common across cohorts linked to factors such as recessions and employment insurance generosity; an age or life-cycle effect; and a cohort-specific effect which shows the differences between cohorts for a given age and macroeconomic effect. The authors find that the cohort effects are likely the dominant factor in explaining the recent stagnation of female participation, just as it explained the large increases in the 1970s and 1980s. The recession of the early 1990s, which according to the authors reduced the female participation rate by 1 percentage point, merely amplified the stagnation phenomenon. As the cohort effects stabilize with the narrowing of the gap between male and female participation rates, the stagnation would have occurred, albeit later in the 1990s, even if more favourable macroeconomic conditions had prevailed. The authors conclude that there is still room for a 2-3 percentage point increase in the participation rate of women 25-64, but the magnitude of the increases of the 1970s and 1980s is not possible as the cohort effects that prevailed then no longer exist. The authors stress that their results are dependent on the amount of flexibility used to capture the cohort effect so that the age profile and its slope can trace both the rise and the flattening of the participation rate by age. They point out that over time participation behaviour of women 25-64 is converging toward that of men, namely, high and flat participation profiles to at least age 55. They also note that the much smaller increase in the female participation rate in the United States in the 1990s relative to the 1970s and 1980s despite the robust U.S. labour market supports their findings as the cohort effects were also levelling out south of the border.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.csls.ca/journals/simp/simp05.pdf
Download Restriction: no

as
in new window

This chapter was published in: Andrew Sharpe & Louis Grignon (ed.) A Symposium on Canadian Labour Force Participation in the 1990s (Special Issue of Canadian Business Economics, Volume 7, Number 2, May 1999), Centre for the Study of Living Standards, pages 57-70, 1999.
This item is provided by Centre for the Study of Living Standards in its series A Symposium on Canadian Labour Force Participation in the 1990s (Special Issue of Canadian Business Economics, Volume 7, Number 2, May 1999) with number 05.
Handle: RePEc:sls:lfpcbe:05
Contact details of provider: Postal: 151 Slater Street, Suite 710, Ottawa, ON K1P 5H3
Phone: 613-233-8891
Fax: 613-233-8250
Web page: http://www.csls.ca/
Email:


More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Web: http://www.csls.ca Email:


References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Paul Beaudry & David A. Green, 2000. "Cohort patterns in Canadian earnings: assessing the role of skill premia in inequality trends," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(4), pages 907-936, November.
  2. David Card, 1992. "A Comparative Analysis of Unemployment in Canada and the United States," Working Papers 677, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sls:lfpcbe:05. 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: (Whitney Hamilton)

The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Whitney Hamilton to update the entry or send us the correct address

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.