Nº 46 (February, 2007). Leonardo Gasparini & Leopoldo Tornarolli. 

“Labor informality in Latin America and the Caribbean: patterns and trends from household survey microdata”.

This paper documents the main patterns and trends of alternative definitions of labor informality in Latin America and the Caribbean, by exploiting a large database of more than 100 household surveys covering the period 1989-2005. The evidence suggests that there are no signs of a consistent pattern of reduction in labor informality in the region. Regardless of the definition used, labor informality remains a pervasive characteristic of labor markets in LAC. In several countries the increase in labor informality seems to have been associated more to a sizeable increase in the propensity to set informal arrangements within groups, than to changes in the national employment structure toward more informal sectors.

Published in Revista Desarrollo y Sociedad 63 (1), 13-80, 2009