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MOVING UP OR MOVING ON: WHO ADVANCES IN THE LOW-WAGE LABOR MARKET? By Fredrik Andersson, Harry J. Holzer, Julia I. Lane Russell Sage Foundation, 2005.

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Presentation on theme: "MOVING UP OR MOVING ON: WHO ADVANCES IN THE LOW-WAGE LABOR MARKET? By Fredrik Andersson, Harry J. Holzer, Julia I. Lane Russell Sage Foundation, 2005."— Presentation transcript:

1 MOVING UP OR MOVING ON: WHO ADVANCES IN THE LOW-WAGE LABOR MARKET? By Fredrik Andersson, Harry J. Holzer, Julia I. Lane Russell Sage Foundation, 2005

2 Data: Longitudinal Employer Household Dynamics (LEHD), U.S. Census Bureau Sample: Prime-Age Workers with low annual earnings in five states (CA, FL, NC, MD, IL), Analysis: Among those with low annual earnings (below $12,000) for at least 3 years, what enabled some to transition to persistently higher earnings levels in the subsequent 6 years?

3 Summary of Key Findings Advancement of low earners over time depends not only on their personal skills, but also on characteristics of their employers and jobs High-Wage Sectors: Construction, Durable Manufacturing, Transportation/Utilities, Wholesale Trade, Financial Services, Health Sector Within-Sector differences important: High-wage v. Low-wage firms Better to Move to Higher-Wage Firms than to Accumulate Seniority at Low-Wage Firms: Higher initial wages, more growth over time Minorities and other low earners: Lack Access to Better Firms – Credentials, Work History, Residential Locations, Informal Networks Temp Agencies (and other “intermediaries”) can help connect low earners to better firms

4 Policies 1) Improving Access of Low Earners to Better Firms and Jobs Temps and other intermediaries: Use Local Labor Market Information (LMI) to identify growing high-wage sectors to target Integrate Training with Job Placements Plan for Careers: Sequences of Improving Jobs for low earners 2) Create More Higher-Wage Employers and Jobs Raise Minimum Wages, Encourage Collective Bargaining Subsidies and Tax Credits for Firms that provide higher wages/promotion opportunities to less-skilled workers Technical assistance to help transform firms – e.g., building career ladders and lattices in nursing homes 3) Other Supportive Policies Improve Educational Opportunities Supplement Wages and Benefits: Expanded EITC, Health Care, Child Care, etc. Target Groups with Specific Barriers (e.g., those with disabilities, criminal records, etc.)


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