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The Establishment-Level Behavior of Vacancies and Hiring

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  • Steven J. Davis
  • R. Jason Faberman
  • John C. Haltiwanger

Abstract

This paper is the first to study vacancies, hires, and vacancy yields at the establishment level in the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, a large sample of U.S. employers. To interpret the data, we develop a simple model that identifies the flow of new vacancies and the job-filling rate for vacant positions. The fill rate moves counter to aggregate employment but rises steeply with employer growth rates in the cross section. It falls with employer size, rises with worker turnover rates, and varies by a factor of four across major industry groups. We also develop evidence that the employer-level hiring technology exhibits mild increasing returns in vacancies, and that employers rely heavily on other instruments, in addition to vacancies, as they vary hires. Building from our evidence and a generalized matching function, we construct a new index of recruiting intensity (per vacancy). Recruiting intensity partly explains the recent breakdown in the standard matching function, delivers a better-fitting empirical Beveridge Curve, and accounts for a large share of fluctuations in aggregate hires. Our evidence and analysis provide useful inputs for assessing, developing and calibrating theoretical models of search, matching and hiring in the labor market.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16265.

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Date of creation: Aug 2010
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16265

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  1. Steven J. Davis & R. Jason Faberman & John C. Haltiwanger & Ian Rucker, 2008. "Adjusted Estimates of Worker Flows and Job Openings in JOLTS," NBER Working Papers 14137, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Philipp Kircher & Leo Kaas, 2013. "Efficient firm dynamics in a frictional labor market," 2013 Meeting Papers 160, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. Russo, Giovanni & Gorter, Cees & Schettkat, Ronald, 2001. "Searching, hiring and labour market conditions," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(5), pages 553-571, December.
  4. Steven J. Davis & R. Jason Faberman & John Haltiwanger, 2006. "The Flow Approach to Labor Markets: New Data Sources and Micro-Macro Links," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(3), pages 3-26, Summer.
  5. Coles, Melvyn G & Smith, Eric, 1998. "Marketplaces and Matching," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(1), pages 239-54, February.
  6. Coles, Melvyn G & Smith, Eric, 1996. "Cross-Section Estimation of the Matching Function: Evidence from England and Wales," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 63(252), pages 589-97, November.
  7. Steven J. Davis, 2001. "The Quality Distribution of Jobs and the Structure of Wages in Search Equilibrium," NBER Working Papers 8434, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Barron, John M & Berger, Mark C & Black, Dan A, 1997. "Employer Search, Training, and Vacancy Duration," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(1), pages 167-92, January.
  9. Michael W. Elsby & Ryan Michaels & Gary Solon, 2007. "The Ins and Outs of Cyclical Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 12853, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Yashiv, Eran, 2006. "U.S. Labor Market Dynamics Revisited," IZA Discussion Papers 2455, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Holzer, Harry J, 1994. "Job Vacancy Rates in the Firm: An Empirical Analysis," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 61(241), pages 17-36, February.
  12. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, January.
  13. James Albrecht & Susan Vroman, 2000. "A Matching Model with Endogenous Skill Requirements," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0774, Econometric Society.
  14. Yashiv, E., 1999. "The Determinants of Equilibrium Unemployment," Papers 36-99, Tel Aviv.
  15. Berman, Eli, 1997. "Help Wanted, Job Needed: Estimates of a Matching Function from Employment Service Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages S251-92, January.
  16. Melvyn Coles & Barbara Petrongolo, 2008. "A Test Between Stock-Flow Matching And The Random Matching Function Approach," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 49(4), pages 1113-1141, November.
  17. Abraham, Katharine G, 1983. "Structural-Frictional vs. Deficient Demand Unemployment: Some New Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(4), pages 708-24, September.
  18. Abowd, John M & Corbel, Patrick & Kramarz, Francis, 1997. "The Entry and Exit of Workers and the Growth of Employment: An Analysis of French Establishments," CEPR Discussion Papers 1765, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Moen, Espen R, 1997. "Competitive Search Equilibrium," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 385-411, April.
  20. Shigeru Fujita & Garey Ramey, 2007. "The cyclicality of separation and job finding rates," Working Papers 07-19, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  21. Katharine G. Abraham & James R. Spletzer & Michael Harper, 2010. "Labor in the New Economy," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number abra08-1, October.
  22. Katharine G. Abraham, 1987. "Help-Wanted Advertising, Job Vacancies, and Unemployment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 18(1), pages 207-248.
  23. Dickerson, Andy, 2003. "The Distribution and Determinants of Job Vacancies: Evidence From the 2001 Employers Skill Survey," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 63, Royal Economic Society.
  24. Bruce Fallick & Charles A. Fleischman, 2004. "Employer-to-employer flows in the U.S. labor market: the complete picture of gross worker flows," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-34, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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