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Have Employment Relationships in the United States Become Less Stable?

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  • Bansak, Cynthia A
  • Raphael, Steven

Abstract

There has been considerable debate as to whether job stability has declined in the United States. This paper uses data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) to examine the incidence of labor market turnover between 1986 and 1993. Specifically, we calculate one- and two-year separation rates and then analyze turnover by the source of separation. We find that the incidence of job separations did not increase over the period under investigation, but appears to have declined somewhat. The only deviation from this overall trend occurs for workers between 56 and 65 years of age who experienced increased separation rates. When analyzing separations by reason, we find a decrease in voluntary inter-firm mobility from 1986 to 1992 with a slight upturn in 1993 and no clear pattern for involuntary separations. Therefore, we do not find conclusive evidence that employment relationships have become more unstable in the recent past.

Suggested Citation

  • Bansak, Cynthia A & Raphael, Steven, 1998. "Have Employment Relationships in the United States Become Less Stable?," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt7d04m8jx, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdl:ucsdec:qt7d04m8jx
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Peracchi, Franco & Welch, Finis, 1994. "Trends in Labor Force Transitions of Older Men and Women," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(2), pages 210-242, April.
    2. Card, David, 1996. "The Effect of Unions on the Structure of Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 957-979, July.
    3. Diebold, Francis X & Neumark, David & Polsky, Daniel, 1997. "Job Stability in the United States," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 206-233, April.
    4. Robert H. Topel & Michael P. Ward, 1992. "Job Mobility and the Careers of Young Men," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 439-479.
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    Cited by:

    1. Bruce C. Fallick & Charles A. Fleischman, 2001. "The importance of employer-to-employer flows in the U.S. labor market," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2001-18, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    2. Susan N. Houseman & Anne E. Polivka, 1999. "The Implications of Flexible Staffing Arrangements for Job Stability," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 99-56, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
    3. Friedberg Leora & Owyang Michael T & Sinclair Tara M, 2006. "Searching For Better Prospects: Endogenizing Falling Job Tenure and Private Pension Coverage," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-42, August.
    4. David Neumark, 2000. "Changes in Job Stability and Job Security: A Collective Effort to Untangle, Reconcile, and Interpret the Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7472, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Christian Sigouin, 2000. "Self-enforcing Employment Contracts and Business Cycle Fluctuations," Cahiers de recherche CREFE / CREFE Working Papers 127, CREFE, Université du Québec à Montréal.
    6. Sigouin, Christian, 2004. "Self-enforcing employment contracts and business cycle fluctuations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 339-373, March.
    7. Bruce C. Fallick & Charles A. Fleischman, 2004. "Employer-to-employer flows in the U.S. labor market: the complete picture of gross worker flows," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-34, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    8. Campbell III, Carl M., 2006. "A model of the determinants of effort," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 215-237, March.

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    Keywords

    employment stability; labor turnover;

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