Moving Up or Moving on: Who Advances in the Low Wage Labor Market

Moving Up or Moving on: Who Advances in the Low Wage Labor Market
Paul Chapman Educational Publishing
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For over a decade, policy makers have emphasized work as the best means to escape poverty. However, millions of working Americans still fall below the poverty line. Though many of these "working poor" remain mired in poverty for long periods, some eventually climb their way up the earnings ladder. These success stories show that the low wage labor market is not necessarily a dead end, but little research to date has focused on how these upwardly mobile workers get ahead. In "Moving Up or Moving On," Fredrik Andersson, Harry Holzer, and Julia Lane examine the characteristics of both employees and employers that lead to positive outcomes for workers. Using new Census data, "Moving Up or Moving On" follows a group of low earners over a nine-year period to analyze the behaviors and characteristics of individuals and employers that lead workers to successful career outcomes. The authors find that, in general, workers who "moved on" to different employers fared better than those who...

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