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Increased Opportunity to Move up the Economic Ladder?: Earnings Mobility in EU: 1994-2001

  • Denisa Maria Sologon
  • Cathal O'Donoghue

Do EU citizens have an increased opportunity to improve their position in the distribution of earnings over time? This question is answered by exploring short and long-term wage mobility for males across 14 EU countries between 1994 and 2001 using ECHP. Mobility is evaluated using rank measures which capture positional movements in the distribution of earnings. All countries recording an increase in cross-sectional inequality recorded also a decrease in short-term mobility. Among countries where inequality decreased, short-term mobility increased in Denmark, Spain, Ireland and UK, and decreased in Belgium, France and Ireland. Long-term mobility is higher than short-term mobility, but long-term persistency is still high in all countries. The lowest long-term mobility is found in Luxembourg followed by four clusters: first, Spain, France and Germany; second, Netherlands, and Portugal; third, UK, Italy and Austria; forth, Greece, Finland, Belgium and Ireland. The highest long-term mobility is recorded in Denmark.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.341695.de/diw_sp0221.pdf
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Paper provided by DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in its series SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research with number 221.

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Length: 62 p.
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp221
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  1. Peter Gottschalk & Enrico Spolaore, 2000. "On the Evaluation of Economic Mobility," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 459, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 09 Apr 2001.
  2. Fields, Gary S. & Ok, Efe A., 1996. "The Measurement of Income Mobility: An Introduction to the Literature," Working Papers 96-05, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  3. Aaberge, Rolf, et al, 2002. "Income Inequality and Income Mobility in the Scandinavian Countries Compared to the United States," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 48(4), pages 443-69, December.
  4. Fields, Gary S. & Leary, Jesse B. & Ok, Efe A., 2002. "Stochastic dominance in mobility analysis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 333-339, May.
  5. Creedy, John & Wilhelm, Mark, 2002. "Income Mobility, Inequality and Social Welfare," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(2), pages 140-50, June.
  6. Jenkins,Stephen P. & Kapteyn,Arie & Praag,Bernard M. S. van (ed.), 1998. "The Distribution of Welfare and Household Production," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521623025.
  7. Dickens, Richard, 2000. "Caught in a Trap? Wage Mobility in Great Britain: 1975-1994," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 67(268), pages 477-97, November.
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