Big data sheds light on income risk – Minneapolis Fed research

Minneapolis Fed at night
The Minneapolis Fed at night
Michael Hicks

New and bigger sources of data are allowing economists to better understand patterns in income risk, according to an article published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.

Fatih Guvenen outlines results based on data on millions of individuals from the US Social Security Administration. One seemingly counterintuitive result is that the variance of income shocks does not vary much with the economic cycle, which seems to contradict the idea that risks grow in recessions.

However, he also