Careers within Firms: Occupational Mobility Over the Life Cycle
47 Pages Posted: 7 May 2018
Date Written: April 12, 2018
With falling labor market dynamism in the United States, opportunities within firms take on increasing importance in young workers’ career progression. Developing a variety of occupational ranking metrics, I show that occupational mobility within firms follows a standard life cycle pattern in which the frequency, distance, and wage return from mobility falls with age. However, when upward and downward mobility are considered separately, the average magnitude of directional mobility increases through middle age. I find that wage growth for young workers deteriorated substantially in the first decade of the 2000s, primarily driven by a reduction in wage growth within firms. Encouragingly, wage growth has improved markedly for young workers since 2012.
Keywords: Careers, occupations, youth
JEL Classification: J24, J62, M51
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation