Thursday, March 21, 2013

Thursday Links


Greg said...

On the fall-off in male work:

A few minutes' work with FRED shows that healthcare and leisure and hospitality are growing strongly as a percentage of total employment. Professional and business services, and education are also growing their shares.

These people-oriented sectors are taking market share away from the thing-oriented sectors: retail, wholesale and transport, finance-insurance-real estate, agriculture, mining & forestry, government excluding education--and of course manufacturing, as you've previously discussed, Stuart.

I wonder whether gender stereotypes are at work here. Perhaps employers tend to choose women for roles in healthcare and L&H, perhaps customers prefer interacting with women, or perhaps the upbringing of men isn't giving them adequate interpersonal "skills". Perhaps existing workers in these traditionally female-dominated areas don't want "too many" of their colleagues to be men (they don't want to be the only woman in their team) - the explanation for neighborhood segregation famously given by Thomas Schelling.

Whatever. Men don't seem to be coping with being discriminated against in the job market.

David Autor is very wedded to the skill-biased technological change (SBTC) explanation for wage movements and is consequently at a loss to explain the difference experiences of the two genders.

IMO the existence of preferences explains the different wage trajectories of men and women better than does SBTC.

Willy Rempel said...

Here's another take re Men:

"My colleague John Schmitt and former colleague Heather Boushey looked at this issue a couple of years ago. They noted that there was a far larger dispersion in the wages of men with college degrees than was the case with women. In fact, there was a substantial overlap between the distribution of wages of men without college degrees and men with college degrees.

This means that while on average men will have higher earnings with a college degree than without one, for a substantial portion of men this is not true. Presumably the marginal college student (the one who is deliberating over going to college versus starting their career) is more likely to be in this group of losers among college grads than the typical college student who never contemplated not attending college.

Since there is a much greater risk for men than women (who don't have the same dispersion of wages among college grads) of ending up as losers by going to college, it should not be surprising that fewer men than women would opt to go to college. So the story is really simple, you just need a bit of economics and statistics to get there."

James said...

I don't think Cyprus is screwed. I think the EU will bail them out if Cyprus holds out for that.

The thing is, what can the EU (i.e., Merkel) do to Cyprus. Kick them out of the EMU? Cut off support from the ECB?

They can't kick Cyprus out of the EMU because there is a darn good chance that a country kicked out of the EMU will prosper a mere six months after getting kicked out (as Krugman insists Iceland has prospered after exiting a similar situation). Maybe this is true, maybe not - but can Merkel afford to take the chance? If Cyprus got kicked out and prospered the Spaniards and Greeks would be clamouring to follow suit and those countries are still democracies that cannot entirely thwart the will of their people.

Merkel can't risk it. She will cave if the Cyprus government doesn't blink first.