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Job Referral Networks and the Determination of Earnings in Local Labor Markets

Referral networks may affect the efficiency and equity of labor market outcomes, but few studies have been able to identify earnings effects empirically. To make progress, I set up a model of on-the-job search in which referral networks channel information about high-paying jobs. I evaluate the model using employer-employee matched data for the U.S. linked to the Census block of residence for each worker. The referral effect is identified by variations in the quality of local referral networks within narrowly defined neighborhoods. I find, consistent with the model, a positive and significant role for local referral networks on the full distribution of earnings outcomes from job search.

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Paper provided by Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau in its series Working Papers with number 10-40.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:10-40
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  1. John M. Abowd & Bryce E. Stephens & Lars Vilhuber & Fredrik Andersson & Kevin L. McKinney & Marc Roemer & Simon Woodcock, 2009. "The LEHD Infrastructure Files and the Creation of the Quarterly Workforce Indicators," NBER Chapters, in: Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data, pages 149-230 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Giorgio Topa & Stephen Ross & Patrick Bayer, 2005. "Place of Work and Place of Residence: Informal Hiring Networks and Labor Market Outcomes," Working Papers 05-23, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  3. Wahba, Jackline & Zenou, Yves, 2004. "Density, Social Networks and Job Search Methods: Theory and Application to Egypt," Working Paper Series 629, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
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  5. Yannis M. Ioannides & Linda Datcher Loury, 2002. "Job Information Networks, Neighborhood Effects and Inequality," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0217, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  6. Pierre Cahuc & Fran�Ois Fontaine, 2009. "On the Efficiency of Job Search with Social Networks," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 11(3), pages 411-439, 06.
  7. Éva Nagypál, 2006. "On the extent of job-to-job transitions," 2006 Meeting Papers 10, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. John M. Abowd & Paul A. Lengermann & Kevin L. McKinney, 2002. "The Measurement of Human Capital in the U.S. Economy," Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Technical Papers 2002-09, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau, revised Mar 2003.
  9. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Matthew O. Jackson, 2004. "The Effects of Social Networks on Employment and Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 426-454, June.
  10. Conley, Timothy G. & Topa, Giorgio, 2007. "Estimating dynamic local interactions models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 140(1), pages 282-303, September.
  11. Flinn, Christopher J & Heckman, James J, 1983. "Are Unemployment and Out of the Labor Force Behaviorally Distinct Labor Force States?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(1), pages 28-42, January.
  12. Melissa Bjelland & Bruce Fallick & John Haltiwanger & Erika McEntarfer, 2011. "Employer-to-Employer Flows in the United States: Estimates Using Linked Employer-Employee Data," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(4), pages 493-505, October.
  13. Conley, T.G. & Udry, C.R., 2000. "Learning about a New Technology: Pineapple in Ghana," Papers 817, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  14. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Duranton, Gilles & Gobillon, Laurent, 2008. "Spatial wage disparities: Sorting matters!," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 723-742, March.
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  18. repec:inr:wpaper:155908 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Manishi Prasad & Peter Wahlqvist & Rich Shikiar & Ya-Chen Tina Shih, 2004. "A," PharmacoEconomics, Springer Healthcare | Adis, vol. 22(4), pages 225-244.
  20. John M. Abowd & Robert H. Creecy & Francis Kramarz, 2002. "Computing Person and Firm Effects Using Linked Longitudinal Employer-Employee Data," Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Technical Papers 2002-06, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
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