IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Job Loss in the Great Recession and its Aftermath: U.S. Evidence from the Displaced Workers Survey


  • Henry S. Farber

    (Princeton University)


The Great Recession from December 2007 to June 2009 is associated with a dramatic weakening of the labor market from which, by some measures, it has not completely recovered. I use data from the Displaced Workers Survey(DWS) from 1984-2014 to investigate the incidence and consequences of job loss from 1981-2013. In particular, the 2010, 2012, and 2014 DWSs provide a window through which to examine the experience of job losers in the Great Recession and its aftermath and to compare their experience to that of earlier job losers. These data show a record high rate of job loss in the Great Recession, with almost one in six workers reporting having lost a job in the 2007-2009 period, that has not yet returned to pre-recession levels. The employment consequences of job loss are also very serious during this period with very low rates of reemployment and diff culty finding full-time employment. The reduction in weekly earnings for those job losers during the 2007-2013 period who were able to find new employment are not unusually large by historical standards.

Suggested Citation

  • Henry S. Farber, 2015. "Job Loss in the Great Recession and its Aftermath: U.S. Evidence from the Displaced Workers Survey," Working Papers 589, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  • Handle: RePEc:pri:indrel:589

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kory Kroft & Fabian Lange & Matthew J. Notowidigdo, 2013. "Duration Dependence and Labor Market Conditions: Evidence from a Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(3), pages 1123-1167.
    2. Johannes F. Schmieder & Till von Wachter, 2010. "Does Wage Persistence Matter for Employment Fluctuations? Evidence from Displaced Workers," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 1-21, July.
    3. Steven J. Davis & Till Von Wachter, 2011. "Recessions and the Costs of Job Loss," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 42(2 (Fall)), pages 1-72.
    4. repec:fth:prinin:303 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Parent, Daniel, 2000. "Industry-Specific Capital and the Wage Profile: Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth and the Panel Study of Income Dynamics," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 306-323, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Abraham, Katharine G. & Haltiwanger, John C. & Sandusky, L. Kristin & Spletzer, James R., 2016. "The Consequences of Long Term Unemployment: Evidence from Matched Employer-Employee Data," IZA Discussion Papers 10223, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Lauren L. Schmitz & Dalton Conley, 2016. "The Impact of Late-Career Job Loss and Genotype on Body Mass Index," NBER Working Papers 22348, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. repec:spr:jlabre:v:38:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s12122-017-9244-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. J. Meekes & W.H.J. Hassink, 2016. "The role of the housing market in workers’ resilience to job displacement after firm bankruptcy," Working Papers 16-10, Utrecht School of Economics.
    5. repec:bla:indres:v:56:y:2017:i:4:p:688-722 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. repec:eee:macchp:v2-2131 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Verho, Jouko, 2017. "Economic crises and unemployment persistence: Analysis of job losses during the Finnish 1990s recession," Working Papers 99, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    8. Katharine G. Abraham & John C. Haltiwanger & Kristin Sandusky & James Spletzer, 2016. "The Consequences of Long-Term Unemployment: Evidence from Linked Survey and Administrative Data," NBER Working Papers 22665, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pri:indrel:589. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bobray Bordelon). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.