The New Earnings Survey Panel Dataset is one of the largest datasets of its kind in the world.
Its size and confidentiality restrictions present considerable difficulties for analysis using
standard econometric packages.
This thesis presents a number of methods for accessing the information held within the panel
relatively efficiently, based upon the use of cross-product matrices and on data compression
techniques. These methods allow, for the first time, the panel aspect of the dataset to be used
in analysis. The techniques described here are then employed to produce an overview of
changes in the UK labour market from 1975 to 1990 and detailed estimates of male and female
earnings over a fourteen year period. These are the first panel estimates on the dataset. The
estimates indicate the importance of allowing the parameters of any labour market model to
vary over time, which is significant as panel estimators typically impose structural stability on
the coefficients. Some preliminary estimates of the male-female wage gap indicate that both
heterogeneity and variation over time have an important part to play in accounting for the
differences in wages.