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Did the pattern of aggregate employment growth change in the euro area in the late 1990s?

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  • Mourre, Gilles

Abstract

The paper examines whether the pattern of growth in euro area employment seen in the period 1997-2001 differed from that recorded in the past and what could be the reasons for that. First, a standard employment equation is estimated for the euro area as a whole. This shows that the lagged impact of both output growth and real labour cost growth, together with a productivity trend and employment “inertia”, can account for most of the employment developments between 1970 and the early 1990s. Conversely, these traditional determinants can only explain part of the employment development seen in recent years (1997-2001). Second, the paper shows sound evidence of a structural break in the aggregate employment equation in the late 1990s. Third, the paper provides some tentative explanations for this change in aggregate employment developments, using in particular country panels of institutional variables and of active labour market policies but also cross-sectional analyses. Among the relevant factors likely to have contributed to rising aggregate employment in recent years are changes in the sectoral composition of euro area employment, the strong development of part-time jobs, lower labour tax rates and possibly less stringent employment protection legislation and greater subsidies to private employment. JEL Classification: C2, E24, H50, J23

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 0358.

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Date of creation: May 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20040358

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Keywords: Active labour market policies; Aggregate employment; Demand for labour; euro area; Labour market institutions;

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References

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  1. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173.
  2. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, . "Unemployment, Growth and Taxation in Industrial Countries," Working Papers 122, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  3. Giuseppe Bertola, 1991. "Labor Turnover Costs and Average Labor Demand," NBER Working Papers 3866, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Blanchard, Olivier & Wolfers, Justin, 2000. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages C1-33, March.
  5. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1997. "Jobless Growth: Appropriability, Factor Substitution, and Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 6221, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Stephen Nickell, 1997. "Unemployment and Labor Market Rigidities: Europe versus North America," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 55-74, Summer.
  7. Sanders Korenman & David Neumark, 2000. "Cohort Crowding and Youth Labor Markets (A Cross-National Analysis)," NBER Chapters, in: Youth Employment and Joblessness in Advanced Countries, pages 57-106 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Belot, Michèle & van Ours, Jan C, 2000. "Does the Recent Success of some OECD Countries in Lowering their Unemployment Rates lie in the Clever Design of their Labour Market Reforms?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2492, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Bertola, Giuseppe & Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence, 2001. "Comparative Analysis of Labour Market Outcomes: Lessons for the US from International Long-Run Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 3023, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Julian Morgan, 2001. "Employment security and the demand for labour in Europe," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(14), pages 1763-1774.
  11. Marimon, Ramon & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 1998. "'Actual' versus 'virtual' employment in Europe Is Spain different?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 123-153, January.
  12. 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.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Bergljot Barkbu & Jesmin Rahman & Rodrigo O. Valdés, 2012. "Fostering Growth in Europe Now," IMF Staff Discussion Notes 12/07, International Monetary Fund.
  2. Alfonso Arpaia & Gilles Mourre, 2009. "Institutions and Performance in European Labour Markets: Taking a Fresh Look at Evidence," Working Papers CEB 09-049.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  3. Pattanaik, Falguni & Nayak, Narayan Chandra, 2013. "Employment Intensity Of Secondary Sector In India: Trends, Patterns And Determinants," Journal of Regional Development and Planning, JRDP, vol. 2(2), pages 157-174.
  4. Emilia Herman, 2011. "The Impact of Economic Growth Process on Employment in European Union Countries," Romanian Economic Journal, Department of International Business and Economics from the Academy of Economic Studies Bucharest, vol. 14(42), pages 47-67, December.
  5. Cristiano Perugini, 2008. "Employment Intensity of Growth in Italy A Note Using Regional Data," Quaderni del Dipartimento di Economia, Finanza e Statistica 55/2008, Università di Perugia, Dipartimento Economia, Finanza e Statistica.
  6. Laura Turner & Hervé Boulhol, 2010. "Recent trends and structural breaks in US and EU15 labour productivity growth," Working Papers halshs-00963134, HAL.
  7. Patrick Lenain, 2005. "Is Europe Reforming? Evidence from Cross-Country Structural Indicators," CASE Network Studies and Analyses 0297, CASE-Center for Social and Economic Research.
  8. Herwartz, Helmut & Niebuhr, Annekatrin, 2011. "Regional labor demand and national labor market institutions in the EU15," HWWI Research Papers 112, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
  9. Davide Furceri, 2012. "Unemployment and Labor Market Issues in Algeria," IMF Working Papers 12/99, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Catherine SMITH, 2014. "Did the Intergenerational Solidarity Pact increase the employment rate of the elderly in Belgium? A macro-econometric evaluation," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2014009, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  11. Altavilla, Carlo & Caroleo, Floro Ernesto, 2009. "Unintended Effects of National-based Active Labour Market Policies," IZA Discussion Papers 4045, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Davide Furceri & Ernesto Crivelli & Joël Toujas-Bernate, 2012. "Can Policies Affect Employment Intensity of Growth? A Cross-Country Analysis," IMF Working Papers 12/218, International Monetary Fund.
  13. Klump, Rainer & McAdam, Peter & Willman, Alpo, 2008. "Unwrapping some euro area growth puzzles: Factor substitution, productivity and unemployment," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 645-666, June.
  14. Jochen Hartwig, 2014. "Testing Okun’s Law with Swiss Industry Data," KOF Working papers 14-357, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
  15. Hielke Buddelmeyer & Gilles Mourre & Melanie Ward, 2004. "The determinants of part-time work in EU countries: empirical investigations with macro-panel data - Hielke Buddelmeyer, Gilles Mourre and Melanie Ward," European Economy - Economic Papers 213, Directorate General Economic and Monetary Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
  16. Liana Son & Gratiela Georgiana Carica, 2011. "Labour Market Policies in Selected EU Member States: A Comparative and Impact Analysis," Romanian Economic Journal, Department of International Business and Economics from the Academy of Economic Studies Bucharest, vol. 14(39), pages 151-173, March.

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