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Labor, Output and Consumption in Business Cycle Models of Emerging Economies: A Comment

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  • Andrés Fernández

    ()

  • Felipe Meza

    ()

Abstract

Motivated by the fact that, over the business cycle, labor dynamics in emergingeconomies differ in nontrivial ways from those observed in developed economies, we assess the relative importance of trend shocks in emerging economies in the business cycle model of Aguiar and Gopinath (2007) when labor data is explicitly taken into account. We study Mexico and Canada as representatives of emerging and developed economies, respectively. We find for Mexico that, in the benchmark case with Cobb-Douglas preferences, the income effect on consumption of trend shocks is too strong, delivering countercyclical and counterfactual fluctuations in employment. The model faces a trade-off between, on the one hand, having sizeable growth shocks, thereby having a good match in terms of relatively high consumption volatility, and, on the other, having procyclical employment dynamics. This is remedied when both quasilinear preferences are assumed and the identification strategy explicitly takes into consideration labor dynamics. In this case trend shocks continue to be relatively stronger in emerging economies.Additionally, we find that differences in labor dynamics across emerging and developing economies are associated with the relatively large informal labor sector in emerging economies. It is in this dimension, when trying to match the dynamics of formal employment, that we find less evidence supporting an important role of trend shocks as being the main driving force of business cycles in emerging economies.

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Paper provided by UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE in its series DOCUMENTOS CEDE with number 009249.

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Length: 26
Date of creation: 13 Sep 2011
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Handle: RePEc:col:000089:009249

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Keywords: emerging economies; labor dynamics; consumption volatility;

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  1. Amaral, Pedro S. & Quintin, Erwan, 2006. "A competitive model of the informal sector," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(7), pages 1541-1553, October.
  2. Nan Li & Ceyhun Bora Durdu & Emine Boz, 2010. "Labor Market Search in Emerging Economies," 2010 Meeting Papers 255, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. Correia, I. & Rabelo, S. & Naves, J.C., 1994. "Business Cycles in a Small Open Economy," RCER Working Papers 382, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  4. Elias Brandt & Scott Dressler & Erwan Quintin, 2004. "The real impact of financial crises," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, pages 1-15.
  5. Enrique G. Mendoza, 2010. "Sudden Stops, Financial Crises, and Leverage," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(5), pages 1941-66, December.
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  7. Mark Aguiar & Gita Gopinath, 2004. "Emerging Market Business Cycles: The Cycle is the Trend," NBER Working Papers 10734, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Bosch, Mariano & Maloney, William, 2008. "Cyclical movements in unemployment and informality in developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4648, The World Bank.
  9. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2006. "Can News About the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," 2006 Meeting Papers 31, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  10. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : I. The basic neoclassical model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 195-232.
  11. Pratap, Sangeeta & Quintin, Erwan, 2006. "Are labor markets segmented in developing countries? A semiparametric approach," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(7), pages 1817-1841, October.
  12. Ruy Lama & Carlos Urrutia, 2011. "Employment Protection and Business Cycles in Emerging Economies," Working Papers 1105, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
  13. Meza Felipe & Quintin Erwan, 2007. "Factor Utilization and the Real Impact of Financial Crises," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-41, September.
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