The Public Pay Gap in Britain: Small Differences That (Don't?) Matter
The existing literature on inequality between private and public sectors focuses on cross-section differences in earnings levels. A more general way of looking at inequality between sectors is to recognize that forward-looking agents will care about income and job mobility too. We show that these are substantially different between the two sectors. Using data from the BHPS, we estimate a model of income and employment dynamics over seven years. We allow for unobserved heterogeneity in the propensity to be unemployed or employed in either job sector and in terms of the income process. We then combine the results into lifetime values of jobs in either sector and carry out a cross-section comparative analysis of these values. We have four main findings. First focusing on cross-sector differences in terms of the income process only, we detect a positive average public premium both in income flows and in the present discounted sum of future income flows. Second, we argue that income inequality is lower but more persistent in the public sector, as most of the observed relative cross-sectional income compression in the public sector is due to a lower variance of the transitory component of income. Third, when taking job mobility into account, the lifetime public premium is essentially zero for workers that we categorize as ``high-employability'' individuals, suggesting that the UK labor market is sufficiently mobile to ensure a rapid allocation of workers into their ``natural'' sector. Fourth, we find some evidence of job queuing for public sector jobs among ``low-employability'' workers.
|Date of creation:||May 2005|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: 0117 33 10799
Fax: 0117 33 10705
Web page: http://www.bris.ac.uk/cmpo/
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Zvi Eckstein & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 1999. "Why Youths Drop Out of High School: The Impact of Preferences, Opportunities, and Abilities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(6), pages 1295-1340, November.
- Peter Arcidiacono & John Bailey Jones, 2003.
"Finite Mixture Distributions, Sequential Likelihood and the EM Algorithm,"
Econometric Society, vol. 71(3), pages 933-946, 05.
- Arcidiacono, Peter & Jones, John B., 2000. "Finite Mixture Distribution, Sequential Likelihood, and the EM Algorithm," Working Papers 00-16, Duke University, Department of Economics.
- Audra J. Bowlus & Jean-Marc Robin, 2004.
"Twenty Years of Rising Inequality in U.S. Lifetime Labour Income Values,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71, pages 709-742, 07.
- Audra J. Bowlus & Jean-Marc Robin, 2004. "Twenty Years of Rising Inequality in U.S. Lifetime Labour Income Values," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(3), pages 709-742.
- Audra J, Bowlus & Jean-Marc Robin, 2002. "Twenty Years of Rising Inequality in US Lifetime Labor Income Values," Working Papers 2002-58, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
- Dustmann, C. & van Soest, A., 1997.
"Public and Private Sector Wages of Male Workers in Germany,"
Economics Working Papers
eco97/13, European University Institute.
- Dustmann, Christian & van Soest, Arthur, 1998. "Public and private sector wages of male workers in Germany," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(8), pages 1417-1441, September.
- Tullio Jappelli & Luigi Pistaferri, 2004.
"Intertemporal choice and consumption mobility,"
2004 Meeting Papers
195, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Tullio Jappelli & Luigi Pistaferri, 2000. "Intertemporal Choice and Consumption Mobility," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0118, Econometric Society.
- Tullio Jappelli & Luigi Pistaferri, 1999. "Intertemporal Choice and Consumption Mobility," CSEF Working Papers 23, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
- Jappelli, Tullio & Pistaferri, Luigi, 2005. "Intertemporal choice and consumption mobility," CFS Working Paper Series 2005/28, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
- Mueller, Richard E., 1998. "Public-private sector wage differentials in Canada: evidence from quantile regressions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 229-235, August.
- Richard Blundell & Ian Preston, 1997.
"Consumption, inequality and income uncertainty,"
IFS Working Papers
W97/15, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- Richard Blundell & Luigi Pistaferri & Ian Preston, 2008.
"Consumption Inequality and Partial Insurance,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1887-1921, December.
- Peter Gottschalk, 1997. "Inequality, Income Growth, and Mobility: The Basic Facts," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 21-40, Spring.
- Lawrence Katz & Alan Krueger, 1991.
"Changes in the Structure of Wages in the Public and Private Sectors,"
662, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
- Katz, L.F. & Krueger, A.B., 1991. "Chances In The Structure Of Wages In The Public And Private Sectors," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1547, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1991. "Changes in the Structure of Wages in the Public and Private Sectors," NBER Working Papers 3667, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Keane, Michael P & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1997.
"The Career Decisions of Young Men,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(3), pages 473-522, June.
- van Ophem, Hans, 1993. "A Modified Switching Regression Model for Earnings Differentials between the Public and Private Sectors in the Netherlands," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(2), pages 215-24, May.
- Stephen Nickell & Glenda Quintini, 2002. "The Consequences of The Decline in Public Sector Pay in Britain: A Little Bit of Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(477), pages F107-F118, February.
- Flinn, Christopher J, 2002.
"Labour Market Structure and Inequality: A Comparison of Italy and the U.S,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(3), pages 611-45, July.
- Christopher J. Flinn, 2002. "Labour Market Structure and Inequality: A Comparison of Italy and the U.S," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(3), pages 611-645.
- George J. Borjas, 2002. "The Wage Structure and the Sorting of Workers into the Public Sector," NBER Working Papers 9313, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- James M. Poterba & Kim S. Rueben, 1994. "The Distribution of Public Sector Wage Premia: New Evidence Using Quantile Regression Methods," NBER Working Papers 4734, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Jonathan A. Parker, 1999.
"Consumption Over the Life Cycle,"
NBER Working Papers
7271, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Stewart, Mark, 2006.
"The Inter-related Dynamics of Unemployment and Low-Wage Employment,"
The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS)
741, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
- Mark B. Stewart, 2007. "The interrelated dynamics of unemployment and low-wage employment," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(3), pages 511-531.
- Moulton, Brent R, 1990. "A Reexamination of the Federal-Private Wage Differential in the United States," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 270-93, April.
- Richard Disney & Amanda Gosling, 1998. "Does it pay to work in the public sector?," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 19(4), pages 347-374, November.
- Moshe Buchinsky & Jennifer Hunt, 1996.
"Wage Mobility in the United States,"
NBER Working Papers
5455, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
- Cappellari, Lorenzo, 2002. "Earnings dynamics and uncertainty in Italy: how do they differ between the private and public sectors?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 477-496, September.
- Shorrocks, A F, 1976. "Income Mobility and the Markov Assumption," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 86(343), pages 566-78, September.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bri:cmpowp:05/121. 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: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.