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Accounting for Wage and Employment Changes in the U.S. from 1968-2000: A Dynamic Model of Labor Market Equilibrium

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  • Donghoon Lee

    () (Economics NYU)

  • Kenneth I. Wolpin

Abstract

This paper presents a unified treatment of and explanation for the evolution of wages and employment in the U.S. over the last 30 years. Specifically, we account for the pattern of changes in wage inequality, for the increased relative wage and employment of women, for the emergence of the college wage premium and for the shift in employment from the goods to the service-producing sector. The underlying theory we adopt is neoclassical, a two-sector competitive labor market economy in which the supply of and demand for labor of heterogeneous skill determines spot market skill-rental prices. The empirical approach is structural. The model embeds many of the features that have been posited in the literature to have contributed to the changing U.S. wage and employment structure including skill-biased technical change, capital-skill complementarity, changes in relative product-market prices, changes in the productivity of labor in home production and demographics such as changing cohort size and fertility.

Suggested Citation

  • Donghoon Lee & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 2006. "Accounting for Wage and Employment Changes in the U.S. from 1968-2000: A Dynamic Model of Labor Market Equilibrium," 2006 Meeting Papers 172, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed006:172
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Diego Restuccia & Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2013. "The Evolution Of Education: A Macroeconomic Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 54, pages 915-936, August.
    2. Ariell Reshef, 2013. "Is Technological Change Biased Towards the Unskilled in Services? An Empirical Investigation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 16(2), pages 312-331, April.
    3. Suqin Ge & Dennis Tao Yang, 2014. "Changes In China'S Wage Structure," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 300-336, April.
    4. Aguirregabiria, Victor & Mira, Pedro, 2010. "Dynamic discrete choice structural models: A survey," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 156(1), pages 38-67, May.
    5. L. Rachel Ngai & Barbara Petrongolo, 2017. "Gender Gaps and the Rise of the Service Economy," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 1-44, October.
    6. Estrada, Fernando, 2015. "Antinomies de Le Capital au XXIe siècle
      [Antinomies of Capital in the 21st Century]
      ," MPRA Paper 61126, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Claudia Olivetti & Barbara Petrongolo, 2016. "The Evolution of Gender Gaps in Industrialized Countries," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 8(1), pages 405-434, October.
    8. Elliot Anenberg & Patrick Bayer, 2013. "Endogenous sources of volatility in housing markets: the joint buyer-seller problem," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2013-60, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    9. Keane, Michael P. & Roemer, John E., 2009. "Assessing policies to equalize opportunity using an equilibrium model of educational and occupational choices," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(7-8), pages 879-898, August.
    10. Diego Restuccia & Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2014. "Explaining Educational Attainment across Countries and over Time," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 17(4), pages 824-841, October.
    11. John Bailey Jones & Fang (Annie) Yang, 2011. "Skill-Biased Technical Change and the Cost of Higher Education: An Exploratory Model," Discussion Papers 11-02, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
    12. repec:bla:ecinqu:v:55:y:2017:i:2:p:1064-1090 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. John Bailey Jones & Fang Yang, 2016. "Skill-Biased Technical Change and the Cost of Higher Education," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 34(3), pages 621-662.
    14. Zvi Eckstein & Osnat Lifshitz, 2011. "Dynamic Female Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(6), pages 1675-1726, November.
    15. Buera, Francisco J. & Kaboski, Joseph P., 2012. "Scale and the origins of structural change," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(2), pages 684-712.
    16. Ariel Burstein & Eduardo Morales & Jonathan Vogel, 2015. "Accounting for Changes in Between-Group Inequality," NBER Working Papers 20855, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Michael P. Keane, 2015. "Effects Of Permanent And Transitory Tax Changes In A Life‐Cycle Labor Supply Model With Human Capital," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 56, pages 485-503, May.
    18. Diego Restuccia & Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2014. "Explaining Educational Attainment across Countries and over Time," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 17(4), pages 824-841, October.
    19. Rong Hai, 2013. "The Determinants of Rising Inequality in Health Insurance and Wages: An Equilibrium Model of Workers' Compensation and Health Care Policies," PIER Working Paper Archive 13-019, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    20. Jared Ashworth & V. Joseph Hotz & Arnaud Maurel & Tyler Ransom, 2017. "Changes across Cohorts in Wage Returns to Schooling and Early Work Experiences," NBER Working Papers 24160, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Keane, Michael P. & Todd, Petra E. & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 2011. "The Structural Estimation of Behavioral Models: Discrete Choice Dynamic Programming Methods and Applications," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier.
    22. repec:pal:eurjdr:v:29:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1057_s41287-016-0013-z is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Olivetti, Claudia & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2016. "The evolution of the gender gap in industrialized countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 11034, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    gender wage differential; college wage premium; sectoral changes;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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