The measurement of earnings in the post-Apartheid period: An overview

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Show simple item record Wittenberg, Martin Pirouz, Farah 2013-10-03T09:23:11Z 2013-10-03T09:23:11Z 2013-09
dc.identifier.isbn 978-1-920517-49-6
dc.description.abstract Introduction: Earnings questions have been asked in South Africa’s national surveys annually since 1994. A key question for labour economists has been to track and explain the evolution of earnings over this post-apartheid period. Unfortunately, however, the measurement instrument has changed in ways that make it tricky to simply take the raw figures and compare them even if one restricts the attention to the October Household Surveys and the various Labour Force Surveys. In this paper we analyse some of the changes and indicate where corrections are needed. We implement many of these changes in the second release of PALMS, the Post-Apartheid Labour Market Series (Kerr, Lam and Wittenberg 2013). The structure of the paper is as follows. In section 2 we review studies done on the earnings variables in the national surveys from Statistics South Africa, particularly those that comment on the comparability of the variables over time. In Section 3 we pay attention in more detail to the evolution of the measurement instrument. We then turn to an analysis of the actual responses in section 4 with a view to pinpointing where the underlying measurements may have changed. The following sections deal with ways of handling bracket information and missing data respectively . In section 8 we look at the impact of these data quality adjustments on the estimation of average real earnings over time. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship We acknowledge the support of an infrastructure grant to DataFirst from the Redi3x3 project on “Employment/Unemployment, Income Distribution and Inclusive Growth". The Vice-Chancellor’s Strategic Fund of the University of Cape Town paid for the initial construction of the PALMS dataset without which this research would not have been possible. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit
dc.relation.ispartofseries SALDRU Working Paper;108
dc.subject Earnings en_US
dc.subject Post-Apartheid en_US
dc.subject Palms en_US
dc.subject Labour Market en_US
dc.title The measurement of earnings in the post-Apartheid period: An overview en_US
dc.type Working Paper en_US

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