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Hysteresis in West German Unemployment Reconsidered

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  • Michael Reutter
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    Abstract

    The view that high unemployment in West Germany and other European countries is caused by a path dependence effect - or "hysteresis" effect - is quite popular among economists. However, because of an identification problem, much of the empirical evidence for this hypothesis is not fu lly convincing. This paper suggests a testing procedure that overcomes this problem. It is argued that in a cointegration framework it is reasonable to define hysteresis as the absence of weak exogeneity of the explanatory variables. Building on a cointeg ration model of the employment rate in West Germany, I find only weak evidence for hysteresis.

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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2000/wp-cesifo-2000-01/WP240.PDF
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 240.

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    Date of creation: 2000
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_240

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    Keywords: Cointegration; hysteresis; trade unions; unemployment;

    References

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    1. Hargreaves Heap, S P, 1980. "Choosing the Wrong 'Natural' Rate: Accelerating Inflation or Decelerating Employment and Growth?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(359), pages 611-20, September.
    2. Alogoskoufis, George & Manning, Alan, 1988. "Wage setting and unemployment persistence in Europe, Japan and the USA," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 698-706, March.
    3. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," Working papers 427, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    4. Johansen, Soren, 1992. "Cointegration in partial systems and the efficiency of single-equation analysis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 389-402, June.
    5. Canova, Fabio & Hansen, Bruce E, 1995. "Are Seasonal Patterns Constant over Time? A Test for Seasonal Stability," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(3), pages 237-52, July.
    6. Giavazzi, Francesco & Wyplosz, Charles, 1985. "The Zero Root Problem: A Note on the Dynamic Determination of the Stationary Equilibrium in Linear Models," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 353-57, April.
    7. Phillips, P C B, 1991. "Optimal Inference in Cointegrated Systems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 283-306, March.
    8. Baldwin, Richard & Krugman, Paul, 1989. "Persistent Trade Effects of Large Exchange Rate Shocks," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(4), pages 635-54, November.
    9. Phelps, Edmund S & Zoega, Gylfi, 1998. "Natural-Rate Theory and OECD Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(448), pages 782-801, May.
    10. Manning, Alan, 1995. "Developments in Labour Market Theory and Their Implications for Macroeconomic Policy," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 42(3), pages 250-66, August.
    11. Carlin, Wendy & Soskice, David, 1990. "Macroeconomics and the Wage Bargain: A Modern Approach to Employment, Inflation, and the Exchange Rate," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198772446.
    12. Hylleberg, S. & Engle, R.F. & Granger, C.W.J. & Yoo, B.S., 1988. "Seasonal, Integration And Cointegration," Papers 6-88-2, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
    13. Manning, Alan, 1993. "Wage Bargaining and the Phillips Curve: The Identification and Specification of Aggregate Wage Equations," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(416), pages 98-118, January.
    14. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Summers, Lawrence H, 1988. "Beyond the Natural Rate Hypothesis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(2), pages 182-87, May.
    15. Franses, Philip Hans, 1996. "Periodicity and Stochastic Trends in Economic Time Series," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198774549.
    16. Roed, Knut, 1997. " Hysteresis in Unemployment," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(4), pages 389-418, December.
    17. Peter C.B. Phillips & Bruce E. Hansen, 1988. "Statistical Inference in Instrumental Variables," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 869R, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Apr 1989.
    18. Kalai, Ehud, 1977. "Proportional Solutions to Bargaining Situations: Interpersonal Utility Comparisons," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(7), pages 1623-30, October.
    19. Franz, Wolfgang, 1990. "Hysteresis in Economic Relationships: An Overview," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 109-25.
    20. Profit, Stefan & Tschernig, Rolf, 1998. "Germany's labor market problems: What to do and what not to do? A survey among experts," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1998,94, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
    21. Bruno Amable & Jérôme Henry & Frédéric Lordon & Richard Topol, 1993. "Unit Root in the Wage-Price Spiral Is Not Hysteresis in Unemployment," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 20(1/2), pages 123-135, January.
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    Cited by:
    1. Bayer, Christian & Juessen, Falko, 2006. "Convergence in West German Regional Unemployment Rates," Technical Reports 2006,39, Technische Universität Dortmund, Sonderforschungsbereich 475: Komplexitätsreduktion in multivariaten Datenstrukturen.
    2. Wolfgang Franz, 2001. "Neues von der NAIRU?," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 221(3), pages 256-284.

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