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Modeling Labor Markets with Heterogeneous Agents and Matches

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  • Simon D Woodcock

Abstract

I present a matching model with heterogeneous workers, firms, and worker-fim matches. The model generalizes the seminal Jovanovic (1979) model to the case of heterogeneous agents. The equilibrium wage is linear in a person-specific component, a firm-specific component, and a match specific component that varies with tenure. Under certain conditions, the equilibrium wage takes a simpler structure where the match specific component does not vary with tenure. I discuss fixed- and mixedeffect methods for estimating wage models with this structure on longitudinal linked employer-employee data. The fixed effect specification relies on restrictive identification conditions, but is feasible for very large databases. The mixed model requires less restrictive identification conditions, but is feasible only on relatively small databases. Both the fixed and mixed models generate empirical person, firm, and match effects with characteristics that are consistent with predictions from the matching model; the mixed model moreso than the fixed model. Shortcomings of the fixed model appear to be artifacts of the identification conditions.

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File URL: ftp://ftp2.census.gov/ces/tp/tp-2002-19.pdf
File Function: First version, 2002
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau in its series Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Technical Papers with number 2002-19.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: May 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cen:tpaper:2002-19

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  1. Stern, Steven, 1990. "The Effects of Firm Optimizing Behaviour in Matching Models," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(4), pages 647-60, October.
  2. John M. Abowd & Francis Kramarz & David N. Margolis, 1994. "High-Wage Workers and High-Wage Firms," CIRANO Working Papers 94s-23, CIRANO.
  3. Farber, Henry S & Gibbons, Robert, 1996. "Learning and Wage Dynamics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(4), pages 1007-47, November.
  4. Robert Shimer & Lones Smith, 2000. "Assortative Matching and Search," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(2), pages 343-370, March.
  5. Simon Burgess & Julia Lane & David Stevens, 1996. "Job Flows, Worker Flows and Churning," Labor and Demography 9604004, EconWPA.
  6. Gautier, Pieter A, 2002. "Unemployment and Search Externalities in a Model with Heterogeneous Jobs and Workers," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 69(273), pages 21-40, February.
  7. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1979. "Job Matching and the Theory of Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 972-90, October.
  8. �va Nagyp�l, 2007. "Learning by Doing vs. Learning About Match Quality: Can We Tell Them Apart?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(2), pages 537-566.
  9. John M. Abowd & Robert H. Creecy & Francis Kramarz, 2002. "Computing Person and Firm Effects Using Linked Longitudinal Employer-Employee Data," Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Technical Papers 2002-06, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  10. Sattinger, Michael, 1995. "Search and the Efficient Assignment of Workers to Jobs," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(2), pages 283-302, May.
  11. Burdett, Kenneth & Coles, Melvyn G, 1999. "Long-Term Partnership Formation: Marriage and Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(456), pages F307-34, June.
  12. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
  13. Lawrence Blume & David Easley, 1993. "Rational Expectations and Rational Learning," Game Theory and Information 9307003, EconWPA.
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