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Youth unemployment, firm size and reservation wages in South Africa

Author

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  • Rankin, Neil A.
  • Roberts, Gareth A.

Abstract

Youth unemployment in South Africa is high. We investigate whether one of the reasons may be that the wages young people want or need are above those that they could reasonably expect to earn given their characteristics. Unlike previous work on the relationship between reservation wages and unemployment we differentiate between wages in different sizes of firms. Larger firms pay more and thus, even if reservation wages are similar to average predicted wages they may be above wages that young people could expect to earn in smaller firms. We find that this is the case.

Suggested Citation

  • Rankin, Neil A. & Roberts, Gareth A., 2010. "Youth unemployment, firm size and reservation wages in South Africa," MPRA Paper 24027, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:24027
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Abhijit Banerjee & Sebastian Galiani & Jim Levinsohn & Zoë McLaren & Ingrid Woolard, 2008. "Why has unemployment risen in the New South Africa?," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 16(4), pages 715-740, October.
    2. Dubin, Jeffrey A & McFadden, Daniel L, 1984. "An Econometric Analysis of Residential Electric Appliance Holdings and Consumption," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 345-362, March.
    3. Eckstein, Zvi & van den Berg, Gerard J., 2007. "Empirical labor search: A survey," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 136(2), pages 531-564, February.
    4. Nicoli Nattrass & Richard Walker, 2005. "Unemployment And Reservation Wages In Working-Class Cape Town," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 73(3), pages 498-509, September.
    5. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    6. James Heintz & Dorrit Posel, 2008. "Revisiting Informal Employment And Segmentation In The South African Labour Market," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 76(1), pages 26-44, March.
    7. Fernandez, Ana I. & Rodriguez-Poo, Juan M. & Sperlich, Stefan, 2001. "A note on the parametric three step estimator in structural labor supply models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 31-41, December.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Björn Nilsson, 2017. "The School-to-work transition in developing countries," Working Papers DT/2017/07, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
    2. Bhorat, Haroon & Hirsch, Alan & Kanbur, Ravi & Ncube, Mthuli, 2014. "Economic Policy in South Africa: Past, Present, and Future," Working Papers 180150, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
    3. Ferdi Botha, 2012. "The Economics Of Suicide In South Africa," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 80(4), pages 526-552, December.
    4. Derek Yu, 2012. "Youths in the South African labour market since the transition: A study of changes between 1995 and 2011," Working Papers 18/2012, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
    5. Derek Yu, 2013. "Youth unemployment in South Africa since 2000 revisited," Working Papers 04/2013, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Youth unemployment; firm size; reservation wages; South Africa;

    JEL classification:

    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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