Underemployment in the Us and Europe

46 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2018 Last revised: 30 Aug 2018

See all articles by David N.F. Bell

David N.F. Bell

University of Stirling - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

David G. Blanchflower

Dartmouth College - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); University of Stirling - Department of Economics

Date Written: August 2018

Abstract

Large numbers of part-time workers around the world, both those who choose to be part-time and those who are there involuntarily and would prefer a full-time job report they want more hours. Full-timers who say they want to change their hours mostly say they want to reduce them. When recession hit in most countries the number of hours of those who said they wanted more hours, rose sharply and there was a fall in the number of hours that full-timers wanted their hours reduced by. Even though the unemployment rate has returned to its pre-recession levels in many advanced countries, underemployment in most has not.We produce estimates for a new, and better, underemployment rate for twenty-five European countries. In most underemployment remains elevated. We provide evidence for the UK and the US as well as some international evidence that underemployment rather than unemployment lowers pay in the years after the Great Recession. We also find evidence for the US that falls in the home ownership rate have helped to keep wage pressure in check. Underemployment replaces unemployment as the main influence on wages in the years since the Great Recession.

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Suggested Citation

Bell, David N.F. and Blanchflower, David G., Underemployment in the Us and Europe (August 2018). NBER Working Paper No. w24927. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3236733

David N.F. Bell (Contact Author)

University of Stirling - Department of Economics ( email )

Stirling, Scotland FK9 4LA
United Kingdom
+44 1786 467 486 (Phone)
+44 1786 467 469 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
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Germany

David G. Blanchflower

Dartmouth College - Department of Economics ( email )

Hanover, NH 03755
United States
603-646-2536 (Phone)
603-646-2122 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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University of Stirling - Department of Economics ( email )

Stirling, FK9 4LA
United Kingdom

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