For most people, income comes mainly from being employed, not from returns on stock or other forms of property. Because most income is generated in the labor market, it is important to understand how the labor market operates and, in particular, how it is changing and evolving. The main questions of interest within this field pertain to the size, composition, and structure of the labor market.
Size and composition of labor market
What accounts for trends in employment and unemployment rates? Is the rate of female labor force participation continuing to increase? Is youth unemployment for African Americans worsening? Do immigrants constitute an ever-growing share of the workforce?
Structure of labor market
Are new types of less permanent and more flexible employment contracts emerging? Why are unions becoming less prominent in negotiating contracts between labor and capital? Do workers increasingly move from firm to firm? From occupation to occupation?
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