OECD Economics Department Working Papers

ISSN :
1815-1973 (online)
DOI :
10.1787/18151973
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Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.

The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.

 

The US Labour Market Recovery Following the Great Recession You or your institution have access to this content

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Author(s):
Wendy Dunn1
Author Affiliations
  • 1: OECD, France

Publication Date
28 Jan 2013
Bibliographic information
No.:
1015
Pages
34
DOI
10.1787/5k4ddxp3xlvf-en

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Although job creation has improved, since the end of the 2007-08 recession, the effects of the recession on the labour market remain severe. Unemployment duration is still extremely high, and many have withdrawn from the labour market altogether. Because the weakness is largely cyclical in nature, policy makers should place a high priority on supporting aggregate demand in the short term. Even so, policies are needed to help individuals return to work, as there is a risk that high long-term unemployment and weak labour market participation could evolve into structural problems. Greater emphasis should be put on activation measures that help individuals search for jobs more effectively or find adequate training programmes. In the longer run, education and training are key to raising the skills and wages of the workforce. In this regard, educational reforms are needed to increase student achievement at all levels. High-quality vocational training can also be used to advance the skills of high-school graduates. College completion rates could be improved by reducing financial and other barriers to education, and enhancing the community college system would be a cost-effective way to provide more individuals with an affordable way to obtain tertiary education. Disability insurance reforms are needed to reduce dependency on these programmes and encourage participation in the workforce. This Working Paper relates to the 2012 OECD Economic Survey of the United States (www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/United States).
Keywords:
activation policies, structural unemployment, Unemployment duration, job creation, vocational training, human capital, long-term unemployment, hiring subsidies, disability, labour market participation
JEL Classification:
  • J2: Labor and Demographic Economics / Demand and Supply of Labor
  • J6: Labor and Demographic Economics / Mobility, Unemployment, and Vacancies