Earnings and Labour Market Volatility in Britain

Posted: 20 Jul 2013

See all articles by Lorenzo Cappellari

Lorenzo Cappellari

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan; University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Stephen P. Jenkins

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Social Policy and Administration; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER)

Abstract

We provide new evidence about earnings and labour market volatility in Britain over the period 1992-2008, and for women as well as men. (Most research about volatility refers to earnings volatility for US men.) We show that earnings volatility declined slightly for both men and women over the period but the changes are not statistically significant. When we look at labour market volatility, i.e. including in the calculations individuals with zero earnings as well as employees with positive earnings, there is a marked and statistically significant decline for both women and men, with the fall greater for men. Using variance decompositions, we show that the fall in labour market volatility is largely accounted for by changes in employment attachment rates. Labour market volatility trends in Britain, and what contributes to them, differ from their US counterparts in several respects.

Keywords: labour market volatility, earnings volatility, earnings instability, BHPS

JEL Classification: J31

Suggested Citation

Cappellari, Lorenzo and Jenkins, Stephen P., Earnings and Labour Market Volatility in Britain. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7491, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2296298

Lorenzo Cappellari (Contact Author)

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan ( email )

Largo Gemelli, 1
Via Necchi 9
Milan, MI 20123
Italy

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER)

Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Stephen P. Jenkins

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Social Policy and Administration ( email )

Houghton Street
London, England WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) ( email )

Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom
+44 120 687 3374 (Phone)
+44 120 687 3151 (Fax)

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