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On the Ills of Adjustment

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  • Ricardo J. Caballero
  • Mohamad L. Hammour

Abstract

We analyze market impediments to the process of structural adjustment. We focus on incomplete-contract inefficiencies in the transactions between workers and firms that render the quasi-rents from 'specific' investment appropriable. During adjustment, the result is a depressed rate of creation of the new productive structure and excessive destruction of the old one, leading to an employment crisis. Moreover, appropriability weakens the incentives for extensive restructuring and results in a 'sclerotic' productive structure. An adequate managed- adjustment program combines vigorous creation incentives in the expanding sector with measures to support employment in the contracting one. In contrast, the common prescription of gradualism does not act as an effective 'synchronizer' of creation and destruction, for it can only reduce destruction by also reducing an already depressed creation rate.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics in its series Working papers with number 95-21.

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Date of creation: Jul 1995
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Handle: RePEc:mit:worpap:95-21

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Postal: MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY (MIT), DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMICS, 50 MEMORIAL DRIVE CAMBRIDGE MASSACHUSETTS 02142 USA
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  1. Horton, Susan & Kanbur, Ravi & Mazumdar, Dipak, 1991. "Labor markets in an era of adjustment : an overview," Policy Research Working Paper Series 694, The World Bank.
  2. Hosios, Arthur J, 1990. "On the Efficiency of Matching and Related Models of Search and Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 279-98, April.
  3. Tybout, James & de Melo, Jamie & Corbo, Vittorio, 1991. "The effects of trade reforms on scale and technical efficiency : New evidence from Chile," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3-4), pages 231-250, November.
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  6. Lapan, Harvey E, 1976. "International Trade, Factor Market Distortions, and the Optimal Dynamic Subsidy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(3), pages 335-46, June.
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  12. Lopez, Ramon E. & Riveros, Luis A., 1989. "Macroeconomic adjustment and the labor market in four Latin American countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 335, The World Bank.
  13. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Aghion, Philippe, 1994. "On the Speed of Transition in Central Europe," Scholarly Articles 4481322, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  14. J. Peter Neary, 1982. "Intersectoral Capital Mobility, Wage Stickiness, and the Case for Adjustment Assistance," NBER Chapters, in: Import Competition and Response, pages 39-72 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Diamond,Peter A., 1994. "On Time," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521462891, October.
    • Diamond,Peter A., 2009. "On Time," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521119764, October.
  16. Philippe Aghion & Olivier Jean Blanchard, 1994. "On the Speed of Transition Central Europe," NBER Working Papers 4736, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Liu, Lili, 1993. "Entry-exit, learning, and productivity change Evidence from Chile," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 217-242, December.
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  21. repec:fth:coluec:655 is not listed on IDEAS
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 2001. "Creative Destruction and Development : Institutions, Crises and Restructuring," DELTA Working Papers 2001-04, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  2. Maliranta, Mika, 2002. "From R&D to Productivity Through Micro-Level Restructuring," Discussion Papers 795, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
  3. Scholz, Christian M., 1997. "Environmental tax reform with irreversible investment, technological progress and unemployment," Kiel Working Papers 798, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  4. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1996. "The "Fundamental Transformation" in Macroeconomics," NBER Working Papers 5471, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Jasper Hoek, 2002. "Labor Market Institutions and Restructuring: Evidence from Regulated and Unregulated Labor Markets in Brazil," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 484, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  6. Caballero, Ricardo J., 1999. "Aggregate investment," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 12, pages 813-862 Elsevier.
  7. Caballero, R-J & Hammour, M-L, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Specificity," Working papers 96-25, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  8. Gourinchas, Pierre-Olivier, 1999. "Exchange rates do matter: French job reallocation and exchange rate turbulence, 1984-1992," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(7), pages 1279-1316, June.
  9. Campos, Nauro F & Coricelli, Fabrizio, 2002. "Growth in Transition: What we Know, What we Don't and What we Should," CEPR Discussion Papers 3246, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Jaan Masso & Raul Eamets & Kaia Philips, 2004. "Where Have All The Jobs Gone? Gross Job Flows In Estonia," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Working Paper Series 28, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).
  11. Jurajda, Stepán & Terrell, Katherine, 2008. "Job Reallocation in Two Cases of Massive Adjustment in Eastern Europe," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 2144-2169, November.
  12. Richard Mash, 1999. "The Investment Response to Imperfectly Credible Trade Liberalisation with Endogenous Probability of Reversal," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/1998-13, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  13. Masso, Jaan & Eamets, Raul & Philips, Kaia, 2005. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in Estonia: Labour Reallocation and Structural Changes," IZA Discussion Papers 1707, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Valerie A. Ramey & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1998. "Displaced Capital," NBER Working Papers 6775, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Maxim Bouev, 2004. "Diverging Paths: Transition in the Presence of the Informal Sector," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2004-689, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.

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