Job Mobility and Earnings Over the Life Cycle
NBER Working Paper No. 233
The paper analyzes the effects of job mobility on earnings both at young and at older ages. The model takes into account the discontinuity of earnings across jobs, the decline of human capital investment within the job and over the life cycle, and the effects of mobility on the slope of the earnings profile. Careful attention to the functional form of the earnings equation indicates why the coefficient of the current segment is usually larger than the coefficient of the previous segments. Findings from the NLS data include: (1.) Mobile individuals at all ages invest significantly less in on-the-job training. (2.) Although job mobility is associated with significant wage gains (across jobs), there is a substantial wage differential between the mobile and the non-mobile at older ages. (3.) The explanatory power of the earnings equation is significantly increased by accounting for the effects of job mobility; job mobility is an important determinant of the wage structure.
Published: ILRR, Vol. 34, no. 3 (1981): 365-376.