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An essay on the generational effect of employment protection

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  • Chen, Yu-Fu
  • Zoega, Gylfi

Abstract

This paper provides an explanation for the observed positive relationship between youth unemployment and the cost of firing workers. When the cost of firing workers is high, firms only fire when the present discounted value of future losses is high, in which case they gain little by postponing the firing decision in the hope that productivity will recover. The young workers are then the first to go due to their longer remaining tenure. In contrast, when the cost of firing workers is low, the present discounted value of future losses is small at the firing margin and firms may choose to wait in the hope of a recovery. In this case they may choose to fire the older workers first since the younger ones are more likely to be around when productivity recovers.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Mathematical Social Sciences.

Volume (Year): 59 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 349-359

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Handle: RePEc:eee:matsoc:v:59:y:2010:i:3:p:349-359

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505565

Related research

Keywords: Age structure Tenure Firing decisions Real options;

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References

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  1. Abel, Andrew B & Eberly, Janice C, 1994. "A Unified Model of Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1369-84, December.
  2. Olivier Blanchard, 2005. "European Unemployment: The Evolution of Facts and Ideas," NBER Working Papers 11750, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Yu-Fu Chen & Dennis Snower & Gylfi Zoega, 1999. "Firing Costs: Eurosclerosis Or Eurosuccesses," Dundee Discussion Papers in Economics 094, Economic Studies, University of Dundee.
  4. Juan F. Jimeno & Diego Rodríguez-Palenzuela, 2003. "Youth Unemployment in the OECD: Demographic Shifts, Labour Market Institutions and Macroeconomic Shocks," Economics Working Papers 019, European Network of Economic Policy Research Institutes.
  5. Whaley, Robert E., 1981. "On the valuation of American call options on stocks with known dividends," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 207-211, June.
  6. Giuseppe Bertola & Francine Blau & Lawrence Kahn, 2007. "Labor market institutions and demographic employment patterns," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 20(4), pages 833-867, October.
  7. Bentolila, Samuel & Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Firing Costs and Labour Demand: How Bad Is Eurosclerosis?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 381-402, July.
  8. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173.
  9. Paddock, James L & Siegel, Daniel R & Smith, James L, 1988. "Option Valuation of Claims on Real Assets: The Case of Offshore Petroleum Leases," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 479-508, August.
  10. Stephen Nickell & Luca Nunziata & Wolfgang Ochel, 2005. "Unemployment in the OECD Since the 1960s. What Do We Know?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 1-27, 01.
  11. Lazear, Edward P & Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 841-64, October.
  12. Lazear, Edward P, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726, August.
  13. Black, Fischer & Scholes, Myron S, 1973. "The Pricing of Options and Corporate Liabilities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 637-54, May-June.
  14. McDonald, Robert & Siegel, Daniel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-27, November.
  15. Nickell, Stephen, 1998. "Unemployment: Questions and Some Answers," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(448), pages 802-16, May.
  16. Geske, Robert, 1979. "A note on an analytical valuation formula for unprotected American call options on stocks with known dividends," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 375-380, December.
  17. Lazear, Edward P, 1979. "Why Is There Mandatory Retirement?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1261-84, December.
  18. Chen, Yu-Fu & Zoega, Gylfi, 1999. "On the effectiveness of firing costs1," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 335-354, September.
  19. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1990. "Empirical Age-Earnings Profiles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 202-29, April.
  20. Brennan, Michael J. & Schwartz, Eduardo S., 1978. "Finite Difference Methods and Jump Processes Arising in the Pricing of Contingent Claims: A Synthesis," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(03), pages 461-474, September.
  21. Robert C. Merton, 1973. "Theory of Rational Option Pricing," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 4(1), pages 141-183, Spring.
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Cited by:
  1. Yu-Fu Chen & Gylfi Zoega, 2010. "Life-Cycle, Effort and Academic Deadwood," Dundee Discussion Papers in Economics 233, Economic Studies, University of Dundee.
  2. Yu-Fu Chen & Gylfi Zoega, 2010. "Strong Hysteresis due to Age Effects," Dundee Discussion Papers in Economics 230, Economic Studies, University of Dundee.

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