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Employed and Unemployed Job Seekers: Are They Substitutes?


  • Longhi, Simonetta

    () (University of Reading)

  • Taylor, Mark P.



The job search literature suggests that on-the-job search reduces the probability of unemployed people finding a job. However, there is no evidence that employed and unemployed job seekers are similar or apply for the same jobs. We combine the Labour Force Survey and the British Household Panel Survey to compare employed and unemployed job seekers in terms of individual characteristics, preferences over working hours, job-search strategies, and employment histories. We find substantial differences, which persist over the business cycle and remain after controlling for unobserved heterogeneity. We conclude that the unemployed do not directly compete with employed job seekers.

Suggested Citation

  • Longhi, Simonetta & Taylor, Mark P., 2011. "Employed and Unemployed Job Seekers: Are They Substitutes?," IZA Discussion Papers 5827, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5827

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Blog mentions

    As found by, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Do unemployed and employed compete for the same jobs?
      by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2011-07-28 19:01:00


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    Cited by:

    1. Simonetta Longhi & Mark Taylor, 2013. "Occupational Change and Mobility Among Employed and Unemployed Job Seekers," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 60(1), pages 71-100, February.
    2. Longhi, Simonetta & Taylor, Mark P., 2011. "Explaining differences in job search outcomes between employed and unemployed job seekers," ISER Working Paper Series 2011-17, Institute for Social and Economic Research.

    More about this item


    on-the-job search; unemployment; job competition; employment histories; panel data;

    JEL classification:

    • J29 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Other
    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General

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