Some Like It Hot: Assessing Longer-Term Labor Market Benefits from a High-Pressure Economy
This paper explores evidence for positive hysteresis in the labor market. Using data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Youth, we find that negative labor market outcomes during high unemployment periods are mitigated by exposure to a high-pressure economy during the preceding expansion. Breaking total exposure into intensity and duration suggests that these two dimensions have differing impacts. However, the benefits of exposure are not enough to overcome the greater negative impact of high unemployment periods on labor market outcomes of disadvantaged groups, making extension of ...
Gender roles and medical progress
Maternal mortality was the second-leading cause of death for women in childbearing years up until the mid-1930s in the United States. For each death, twenty times as many mothers were estimated to suffer pregnancy-related conditions, often leading to severe and prolonged disablement. Poor maternal health made it particularly hard for mothers to engage in market work. Between 1930 and 1960, there was a remarkable reduction in maternal mortality and morbidity, thanks to medical advances. We argue that these medical advances, by enabling women to reconcile work and motherhood, were essential for ...
Unemployment Flows, Participation, and the Natural Rate for Turkey
This paper measures flow rates into and out of unemployment for Turkey and uses them to estimate the unemployment rate trend, that is, the unemployment rate to which the economy converges in the long run. In doing so, the paper explores the role of labor force participation in determining the unemployment rate trend. We find an inverse V-shaped pattern for Turkey?s unemployment rate trend over time, currently between 8.5 percent and 9 percent, with an increasing labor market turnover. We also find that allowing an explicit role for participation changes the results substantially, initially ...
Exploring causes of and responses to the opioid epidemic in New England
The opioid epidemic remains rampant in New England, where, from 2015 through 2017, more than 10,000 people died from opioid overdoses. In 2017, each of the six states experienced an overdose-death rate that was greater than the national average. Beyond causing a high number of deaths, the opioid epidemic is costing New England productive workers. People with the most severe problems stemming from opioid-use disorder tend to be in the 25?44 age group, but no one is immune. The epidemic affects people of every type?all ages and all races, men and women, residents of rural areas and of urban ...
Labor market transitions and the availability of unemployment insurance
Economists often expect unemployment insurance (UI) benefits to elevate unemployment rates because recipients may choose to remain unemployed in order to continue receiving benefits, instead of accepting a job or dropping out of the labor force. This paper uses individual data from the Current Population Survey for the period between 2005 and 2013 ? a period during which the federal government extended and then reduced the length of benefit availability to varying degrees in different states ? to investigate the influence of program parameters in the UI system on monthly transition rates of ...
Adjusted Employment-to-Population Ratio as an Indicator of Labor Market Strength
As a measure of labor market strength, the raw employment-to-population ratio (EPOP) confounds employment outcomes with labor supply behavior. Movement in the EPOP depends on the relative movements of the employment rate (one minus the unemployment rate) and the labor force participation rate. This paper proposes an adjustment to the calculation of the EPOP using individual microdata to account for both individual characteristics and the probability of labor force participation, which can used to assess the strength of the labor market.
Understanding Recent Trends in Labor Market Participation
District Digest: Understanding Recent Trends in Labor Market Participation
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 ...
Conclusion: How Low Will the Unemployment Rate Go?
A major theme of the posts in our labor market series has been that the outflows from unemployment, either into employment or out of the labor force, have been the primary determinant of unemployment rate dynamics in long expansions. The key to the importance of outflows is that within long expansions there have not been adverse shocks that lead to a burst of job losses. To illustrate the power of this mechanism, we presented simulations in a previous post that were based on the movements in the outflow and inflow rates in the previous three expansions. These simulated paths show the ...
Projecting Unemployment and Demographic Trends
Demographic forces have profoundly shaped the dynamics of U.S. labor force participation and unemployment over the past forty years. Recognizing the importance of these employment indicators for the conduct of monetary policy, this Economic Brief explores how they have been influenced by the U.S. population's changing gender, educational, and age profile. Based on the authors' estimates, the trend U.S. unemployment rate will decline to 4.3 percent over the next ten years as the population continues to age and increase its educational attainment.