Despite corporate downsizing and the rise of Silicon Valley, career-type employment practices remain prevalent in the United States. Evidence to support this claim is drawn from a variety of data on employee tenure and mobility; job creation and job quality; employer responses to labor-market tightness; and benefit and pay structures. Yet while career jobs are not dead, employees today bear more risk, such as risk of job loss and of pay fluctuations. This is an important change. But it would be a mistake to think that employers will ask employees to shoulder ever-larger amounts of risk. That is because there are limits—economic, demographic, and political—to the risk-shifting process.
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