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On the record: Georgia data quantify impact of undocumented workers
Julie Hotchkiss, research economist and policy adviser at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and an adjunct professor at Georgia State University, obtained access to unique data that contain virtually all the wage records of Georgia?s workforce. She and her coauthors devised an algorithm based on millions of wage records between 1990 and 2009 to identify undocumented workers? experiences.
Worker skills and job quality
Some observers have argued that the nation's high unemployment rate during the current recovery stems partly from widespread mismatches between the skills of jobseekers and the needs of employers. A recent San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank conference on workforce skills considered evidence that employers have had difficulties finding workers with appropriate skills in recent years. However, these mismatches do not appear to be much more severe than in the past. Overall, the conference proceedings suggested the U.S. economy can still produce good jobs for workers at a variety of skill levels. ; This Economic Letter summarizes papers presented at the conference ?Creating and Employing a Skilled Work Force: Challenges and Opportunities,? November 7, 2011, at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Conference papers are available on our website.
AUTHORS: Neumark, David; Valletta, Robert G.
The supply and demand of skilled workers in cities and the role of industry composition
The share of high-skilled workers in U.S. cities is positively correlated with city size, and this correlation strengthened between 1980 and 2010. Furthermore, during the same time period, the U.S. economy experienced a significant structural transformation with regard to industrial composition, most notably in the decline of manufacturing and the rise of high-skilled service industries. To decompose and investigate these trends, this paper develops and estimates a spatial equilibrium model with heterogeneous firms and workers that allows for both industry-specific and skill-specific technology changes across cities. The estimates imply that both supply and demand of high-skilled labor have increased over time in big cities. In addition, demand for skilled labor in large cities has increased somewhat within all industries. However, this aggregate increase in skill demand in cities is highly concentrated in a few industries. The finance, insurance, and real estate sectors alone account for 35 percent of the net change over time.
AUTHORS: Brinkman, Jeffrey
Why are manufacturers struggling to hire high-skilled workers?
The authors examine the apparent lack of high-skilled workers for the U.S. manufacturing sector by focusing on the educational attainment and wage compensation of manufacturing workers and their nonmanufacturing counterparts over the period 1990?2007.
AUTHORS: Testa, William A.; Lombardi, Britton