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Permanent and Transitory Wage Inequality of British Men, 1975-2001: Year, Age and Cohort Effects

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  • Kalwij, Adriaan

    (Utrecht School of Economics)

  • Alessie, Rob

    (University of Groningen)

Abstract

We examine the variance-covariance structure of log-wages over time and over the lifecycle of British men from 1975 to 2001, hereby controlling for cohort effects. Wage inequality has risen sharply during the 1980’s and early 1990’s and remained fairly constant in the second half of the 1990’s. We show that this increase is caused mainly by a strong increase in the transitory wage inequality and only to a lesser extent to an increase in the permanent wage inequality. The transitory component of wages is, however, highly persistent over time: serial correlation decreases from 0.88 over a one-year period to 0.65 over a ten-year period. The constant wage inequality in the second half of the 1990’s is attributed to a slight decrease in permanent wages inequality, a stabilization of the variance of the transitory wage shock, and the strong decrease in the transitory wage inequality for the cohorts entering employment since the end of the 1980’s. Ignoring age effects in transitory wage inequality and cohort effects, as is commonly done, leads to severely distorted inferences concerning the changes in permanent wage inequality.

Suggested Citation

  • Kalwij, Adriaan & Alessie, Rob, 2003. "Permanent and Transitory Wage Inequality of British Men, 1975-2001: Year, Age and Cohort Effects," IZA Discussion Papers 686, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp686
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    Cited by:

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    2. Denisa Maria Sologon & Cathal O'Donoghue, 2014. "Shaping Earnings Insecurity: Labor Market Policy and Institutional Factors," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 60(S1), pages 205-232, May.
    3. Lorenzo Cappellari & Marco Leonardi, 2016. "Earnings Instability and Tenure," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 118(2), pages 202-234, April.
    4. María Cervini-Plá & Xavier Ramos, 2012. "Long-Term Earnings Inequality, Earnings Instability and Temporary Employment in Spain: 1993–2000," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 50(4), pages 714-736, December.
    5. Denisa Maria Sologon & O'Donoghue, Cathal, 2011. "Shaping earnings instability: labour market policy and institutional factors," MERIT Working Papers 2011-077, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    6. Gordon L. Clark & Roberto Durán-Fernández & Kendra Strauss, 2010. "'Being in the market': the UK house-price bubble and the intended structure of individual pension investment portfolios," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(3), pages 331-359, May.
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    8. Sologon, Denisa Maria & O'Donoghue, Cathal, 2010. "Earnings Dynamics and Inequality among Men in Luxembourg, 1988-2004: Evidence from Administrative Data," IZA Discussion Papers 5014, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    9. Sologon, Denisa Maria & O'Donoghue, Cathal, 2009. "Earnings Dynamics and Inequality among Men across 14 EU Countries, 1994-2001: Evidence from ECHP," IZA Discussion Papers 4012, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Stephen Hynes & Cathal O’Donoghue, 2005. "Trends in Farm Income Mobility and Inequality in Ireland," Working Papers 0505, Rural Economy and Development Programme,Teagasc.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    mobility; wage distribution; panel data; inequality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General

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