The Value of Transferable Skills

24 marzo 2016
Versione stampabile

2 PM
Room 1F, Department of Economics and Management



Most studies on skill transferability focus on the return to capabilities developed in the initial job and disregard the different characteristics of the origin and the destination industries. In contrast, this paper assesses the borders of skill transferability by comparing the return to skills for firm stayers, firm changers in the same industry and firm changers to other industries. Based on a sample of Portuguese employees in retail banking, our results confirm significant inter-firm and inter-industry skill transferability. Difference-in-differences estimates with propensity score matching show that firm switchers benefit from a wage premium compared to firm stayers. However, the wage premium drops sharply when movers leave the banking sector.

Keywords: skill transferability, retail banking, wage, difference-in differences, propensity score matching
JEL: J24, J31, J62