On the stability of employment growth: a postwar view from the U.S. states
In 1952, the average quarterly volatility of U.S. state employment growth stood at 1.5 percent. By 1995, employment growth volatility came in at just under 0.5 percent. While all states shared in the decline, some states declined much more dramatically than others. We analyze aspects of this decline using new data covering industry employment by state during the postwar period. Estimates from a pooled cross-section/time-series model corrected for spatial dependence indicate that fluctuations in state-specific and aggregate variables have both played an important role in explaining volatility trends. However, state-level differences in responses to aggregate shocks account for less of the postwar fluctuations in employment growth volatility than do state-specific forces.
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