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The impact of structural dynamics on job mobility rates in the United States


This paper examines the job mobility of young American workers in the turbulent labor market of the 1980s and 1990s. To study how structural dynamics affect job mobility, I test hypotheses on such major structural changes as industrial shifts and corporate merger movement. Event history analysis using the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 suggests that structural changes played an important role in determining job mobility outcomes. Industrial expansion decreases the rates of employment exits and between-industry mobility, both upward and downward, net of demographic and human capital variables. Mergers decrease all kinds of job mobility rates, including employment exits and directional moves. This paper demonstrates that research in job mobility, industrial restructuring, and labor market inequality should be integrated in studying the connection between structural changes and individual behaviors. (c) 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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