Measuring the US Employment Situation Using Online Panels: The Yale Labor Survey
This report presents the results of a rapid, low-cost survey that collects labor market data for individuals in the United States. The Yale Labor Survey (YLS) used an online panel from YouGov to replicate statistics from the Current Population Survey (CPS), the government’s source of household labor market statistics. The YLS’s advantages include its timeliness, low cost, and ability to develop new questions quickly to study labor market patterns during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Although YLS estimates of unemployment and participation rates mirrored the broad trends in CPS ...
Can low-wage workers find better jobs?
There is growing concern over rising economic inequality, the decline of the middle class, and a polarization of the U.S. workforce. This study examines the extent to which low-wage workers in the United States transition to better jobs, and explores the factors associated with such a move up the job ladder. Using data covering the expansion following the Great Recession (2011-17) and focusing on short-term labor market transitions, we find that around 70 percent of low-wage workers stayed in the same job, 11 percent exited the labor force, 7 percent became unemployed, and 6 percent switched ...
How Have Households Used Their Stimulus Payments and How Would They Spend the Next?
In this post, we examine how households used economic impact payments, a large component of the CARES Act signed into law on March 27 that directed stimulus payments to many Americans to help offset the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. An important question in evaluating how much this part of the CARES Act stimulated the economy concerns what share of these payments households used for consumption—what economists call the marginal propensity to consume (MPC). There also is interest in learning the extent to which the payments contributed to the sharp increase in the U.S. ...
Racial Disparities in Student Loan Outcomes
Total household debt balances increased by $92 billion in the third quarter of 2019, according to the latest Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit from the New York Fed’s Center for Microeconomic Data. The balance increase reflected nearly across the board gains in various types of debt, with the largest gains of $31 billion in mortgage balances (0.3 percent) and $20 billion in student loan balances (1.4 percent). The Quarterly Report, and the following analysis, are both based on the New York Fed’s Consumer Credit Panel, which is itself based on anonymized Equifax credit report ...
Black and White Differences in the Labor Market Recovery from COVID-19
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the various measures put in place to contain it caused a rapid deterioration in labor market conditions for many workers and plunged the nation into recession. The unemployment rate increased dramatically during the COVID recession, rising from 3.5 percent in February to 14.8 percent in April, accompanied by an almost three percentage point decline in labor force participation. While the subsequent labor market recovery in the aggregate has exceeded even some of the most optimistic scenarios put forth soon after this dramatic rise, the recovery has been ...
How Widespread Is the Impact of the COVID-19 Outbreak on Consumer Expectations?
In a recent blog post, we showed that consumer expectations worsened sharply through March, as the COVID-19 epidemic spread and affected a growing part of the U.S. population. In this post, we document how much of this deterioration can be directly attributed to the coronavirus outbreak. We then explore how the effect of the outbreak has varied over time and across demographic groups.
The Impact of Juvenile Conviction on Human Capital and Labor Market Outcomes
This article documents the long-term relationship among juvenile conviction, occupation choices, employment, wages, and recidivism. Using data from NLSY97, we document that youths who are convicted at or before age 17 have lower full-time employment rate and lower wage growth rate even after 10 years into the labor market. Merging the NSLY97 with occupational characteristics data from O*NET, we show that youths with a juvenile conviction are less likely to be employed in occupations that have a higher on-the-job (OTJ) training requirement and these high OTJ occupations have higher wage and ...
Does Access to Free Pre-Kindergarten Increase Maternal Labor Supply?
We evaluate the effects of free pre-kindergarten (Pre-K) programs on the labor force participation of mothers. We use variation in Pre-K rules across all U.S. states, including income eligibility requirements in some states. To estimate the causal effects of access to Pre-K on labor supply, we exploit the panel aspect of the monthly Current Population Survey between 2002 and 2019. Specifically, we look at the change in labor market behavior of women when their child becomes age-eligible for Pre-K, controlling for individual factors. We find that access to free Pre-K programs increases overall ...