« Links for 5-23-14 | Main | Paul Krugman: Crisis of the Eurocrats »

Friday, May 23, 2014

'The US Labor Market is Not Working'

Antonio Fatás:

The US labor market is not working : In a recent post Paul Krugman looks at the dismal performance of US labor markets over the last decade. To make his point, he compares the employment to population ratio for all individuals aged 25-54 for the US and France. The punch line: even the French work harder than the Americans! And this is indeed a new phenomenon, it was not like that 13 years ago [Just to be clear, there are other dimensions where the French are not working as hard: they retire earlier, they take longer vacations,... but the behavior of the 25-54 year old population is indeed a strong indicator of how a society engages its citizens in the labor market. ]

So are the French the exception? Not quite. Among OECD economies, the US stands towards the bottom of the table when it comes to employment to population ratio for this cohort (#24 out of 34 countries). ...
What is interesting is that most of the countries of the top of the list are countries with a large welfare state and very high taxes (including on labor). So the negative correlation between the welfare state and taxes and the ability to motivate people to work (and create jobs) that some bring back all the time does not seem to be present in the data. ...

[See the original post for the ordered list of countries.]

    Posted by on Friday, May 23, 2014 at 08:27 AM in Economics, Unemployment | Permalink  Comments (25)


    Comments

    Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.