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Unemployment Benefits and the Persistence of European Unemployment

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  • Ortigueira, Salvador

    (Cornell U)

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    Abstract

    In this paper, we present a model of labor search in order to assess the role played by unemployment benefits in the increase of European unemployment since the mid 70's. Our main finding is that although benefits may reduce unemployment, they increase the vulnerability of the economy to employment shocks, which may result in a permanent increase in the rate of unemployment. The novel ingredient in our analysis is the simultaneous consideration of capital investment decisions and time allocation decisions. In so doing, we take into account the feedback between economic growth and unemployment. The predictions of our model provide some rationale for patterns in unemployment, capital accumulation and growth rates observed in some European countries.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics in its series Working Papers with number 01-16.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2001
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    Handle: RePEc:ecl:corcae:01-16

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    1. Balakrishnan, Ravi & Michelacci, Claudio, 2001. "Unemployment dynamics across OECD countries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 135-165, January.
    2. Christopher A. Pissarides, 1997. "The Impact of Employment Tax Cuts on Unemployment and Wages: The Role of Unemployment Benefits and Tax Structure," CEP Discussion Papers dp0361, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    3. David Coe & Dennis Snower, 1996. "Policy Complementarities: The Case for Fundamental Labor Market Reform," Archive Discussion Papers 9625, Birkbeck, Department of Economics, Mathematics & Statistics.
    4. Pissarides, Christopher A, 1992. "Loss of Skill during Unemployment and the Persistence of Employment Shocks," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1371-91, November.
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    7. Lars Ljungqvist & Thomas J. Sargent, 1996. "The European Unemployment Dilemma," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 36, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
    8. Wouter Den Haan & Christian Haefke & Garey Ramey, 2001. "Shocks and Institutions in a Job Matching Model," NBER Working Papers 8463, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    10. Olivier Blanchard & Justin Wolfers, 1999. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    14. Acemoglu, Daron, 2001. "Credit market imperfections and persistent unemployment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 665-679, May.
    15. Hart, Oliver, 1982. "A Model of Imperfect Competition with Keynesian Features," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 97(1), pages 109-38, February.
    16. Steven Shavell & Laurence Weiss, 1978. "The Optimal Payment of Unemployment Insurance Benefits over Time," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 503, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    17. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Unemployment, growth and taxation in industrial countries," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 15(30), pages 47-104, 04.
    18. Dennis J. Snower & David T. Coe, 1996. "Policy Complementarities," IMF Working Papers 96/93, International Monetary Fund.
    19. Howitt, Peter & McAfee, R Preston, 1987. "Costly Search and Recruiting," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 28(1), pages 89-107, February.
    20. Oliver Jean Blanchard & Peter Diamond, 1989. "The Beveridge Curve," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 20(1), pages 1-76.
    21. Easley, David & Kiefer, Nicholas M & Possen, Uri, 1985. "An Equilibrium Analysis of Optimal Unemployment Insurance and Taxation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(5), pages 989-1010, Supp..
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