März 2012

IZA DP No. 6422: Explaining the Dynamics in Perceptions of Job Insecurity in Russia

Contrary to the experiences of other countries, perceptions of job insecurity in Russia were not correlated with the rates of unemployment and the business cycle over the last decade. We develop the theoretical framework that predicts that the individual perceptions of job insecurity depend on regional unemployment rates and on the within-group variance of wage distribution faced by workers. We test this hypothesis using data from ten panel rounds of Russia Longitudinal Monitoring Survey. Our results indicate that while higher rates of unemployment make workers feel less job secure, the wage compression during recessions reduces their fears of losing a job. In periods of economic expansion the effect of lower unemployment rates is offset by the higher fears of losing better paying jobs.