Underemployment in the US and Europe

David Bell, David Blanchflower. The most widely available measure of underemployment is the share of involuntary part-time workers in total employment. This column argues that this does not fully capture the extent of worker dissatisfaction with currently contracted hours. An   […]

Spatial implications of minimum wages

Gabriel Ahlfeldt, Duncan Roth, Tobias Seidel. While there is a large and controversial literature on the implications of minimum wages for employment and the distribution of income, little is known about the consequences across regions. This column describes how the   […]

The myth of intertemporal labour supply substitution: Evidence from tax holidays

Isabel Z. Martínez, Michael Siegenthaler, Emmanuel Saez. Macroeconomists tend to assume that people work more when their wages are temporarily higher, and that this is a key driver of employment fluctuations This column examines how income tax holidays in Swiss   […]

Changing the structure of minimum wages: Firm adjustment and wage spillovers

Giulia Giupponi, Stephen Machin. In 2016 the National Living Wage in the UK raised the minimum hourly wage for workers aged 25 and over. The column uses data from English care homes to analyse the impact of this policy, finding   […]

When short-time work works

Pierre Cahuc, Francis Kramarz, Sandra Nevoux. Short-time work programmes aim to preserve jobs at firms that are experiencing temporarily low revenues, for example during a recession. This column assesses how the short-time work programme implemented in France during the Great   […]

Unemployment: An advanced economy problem?

Ying Feng, David Lagakos, James Rauch. A new data set based on household surveys shows that unemployment is largely a feature of advanced economies, particularly for low-skill workers. Studies of differences in average unemployment rates across countries have focused almost entirely on comparisons   […]

Intergenerational mobility across the world: Where socioeconomic status of parents matters the most (and least)

Ambar Narayan, Roy Van der Weide. Intergenerational mobility is important for both fairness and economic efficiency in a society. This column uses data from a new global study spanning five decades to show that average relative mobility is lower in   […]

Why have employment rates in the US lagged other countries?

Jason Furman, Wilson Powell. The fraction of Americans employed fell between 2007 and 2017, while employment rates rose in 13 of 29 advanced economies in the same period despite these countries also facing a similar headwind of an ageing population. In this   […]

The role of gender in employment polarisation

Fabio Cerina, Alessio Moro, Michelle Rendall. The polarisation of employment by skill level is a phenomenon that has emerged in several industrialised economies in the last decades. This column argues that a substantial fraction of the phenomenon in the US   […]

Tax evasion and inequality

Annette Alstadsæter, Niels Johannesen, Gabriel Zucman. Tax records are often used to gauge the concentration of wealth and income in a society. However, if the rich dodge taxes more than the poor, tax records will underestimate inequality. This column uses   […]