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Search and Offshoring in the Presence of "Animal Spirits"

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  • Mitra, Devashish

    ()
    (Syracuse University)

  • Ranjan, Priya

    ()
    (University of California, Irvine)

Abstract

In this paper, we introduce two sources of unemployment in a two-factor general equilibrium model: search frictions and fairness considerations. We find that a binding fair-wage constraint increases the unskilled unemployment rate and can at the same time lead to a higher unemployment rate for skilled workers, as compared to an equilibrium where fairness considerations are absent or non-binding. Starting from a constrained equilibrium, an increase in the fairness parameter leads to increases in both skilled and unskilled unemployment. The wage of unskilled workers increases but the wage of skilled workers decreases. Next we allow for offshoring of unskilled jobs in our model, and we find that, as a result, it becomes more likely that the fair-wage constraint binds. Offshoring of unskilled jobs always leads to an increase in skilled wage, a decrease in skilled unemployment and an increase in unskilled unemployment. The presence of fairness considerations increases the adverse impact of offshoring on unskilled unemployment. The unskilled wage can increase or decrease as a result of offshoring.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4141.

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Length: 46 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4141

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Keywords: fair wages; unemployment; strategic effect; offshoring;

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  1. Kreickemeier, Udo & Nelson, Douglas, 2006. "Fair wages, unemployment and technological change in a global economy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 451-469, December.
  2. Alberto Alesina & George-Marios Angeletos, 2004. "Fairness and Redistribution," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000283, UCLA Department of Economics.
  3. Cahuc, Pierre & Wasmer, Etienne, 2001. "Does Intrafirm Bargaining Matter In The Large Firm'S Matching Model?," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 5(05), pages 742-747, November.
  4. Davidson, Carl & Martin, Lawrence & Matusz, Steven, 1999. "Trade and search generated unemployment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 271-299, August.
  5. Mark P. Moore & Priya Ranjan, 2005. "Globalisation vs Skill-Biased Technological Change: Implications for Unemployment and Wage Inequality," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(503), pages 391-422, 04.
  6. Stole, Lars A & Zwiebel, Jeffrey, 1996. "Intra-firm Bargaining under Non-binding Contracts," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(3), pages 375-410, July.
  7. Solow, Robert M, 1980. "On Theories of Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(1), pages 1-11, March.
  8. Roger E. A. Farmer, 2009. "Animal Spirits: How Human Psychology Drives the Economy, and Why it Matters for Global Capitalism," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 85(270), pages 357-358, 09.
  9. George A. Akerlof, 2009. "How Human Psychology Drives the Economy and Why It Matters," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1175-1175.
  10. Agell, Jonas & Lundborg, Per, 1995. "Fair Wages in the Open Economy," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 62(247), pages 335-51, August.
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