The Perverse Effects of Partial Labor Market Reform: Fixed Duration Contracts in France
AbstractRather than decrease firing costs across the board, a number of European countries have allowed firms to hire workers on fixed-duration contracts. At the end of a given duration, these contracts can be terminated at little or no cost. If workers are kept on however, the contracts become subject to regular firing costs. We argue in this paper that the effects of such a partial reform of employment protection may be perverse. The main effect may be high turnover in fixed-duration jobs, leading in turn to higher, not lower, unemployment. And, even if unemployment comes down, workers may actually be worse off, going through many spells of unemployment and fixed duration jobs, before obtaining a regular job. Looking at French data for young workers since the early 1980s, we conclude that the reforms have substantially increased turnover, without a substantial reduction in unemployment duration. If anything, their effect on welfare of young workers appears to have been negative.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 8219.
Date of creation: Apr 2001
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Blanchard, O. and A. Landier. "The Perverse Effects Of Partial Labour Market Reform: Fixed-Term Contracts In France," Economic Journal, 2002, v112(480,Jun), F214-F244.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General
- J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Magnac & Visser, 1999.
"Transition models with measurement errors,"
156514, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, France.
- Fougere, Denis & Kramarz, Francis & Magnac, Thierry, 2000.
"Youth employment policies in France,"
European Economic Review,
Elsevier, vol. 44(4-6), pages 928-942, May.
- FougÃ¨re & Kramarz & Thierry Magnac, 2000. "Youth employment policies in France," Working Papers 156232, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, France.
- Fougère, Denis & Kramarz, Francis & Magnac, Thierry, 2000. "Youth Employment Policies In France," CEPR Discussion Papers 2394, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- P Adam & P Canziani, 1998. "Partial De-Regulation: Fixed-Term Contracts in Italy and Spain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0386, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Cahuc, Pierre & Postel-Vinay, Fabien, 2002.
"Temporary jobs, employment protection and labor market performance,"
Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 63-91, February.
- Cahuc, Pierre & Postel-Vinay, Fabien, 2001. "Temporary Jobs, Employment Protection and Labor Market Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 260, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1996.
"The "Fundamental Transformation" in Macroeconomics,"
NBER Working Papers
5471, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Caballero, Ricardo J & Hammour, Mohamad L, 1996. "The "Fundamental Transformation" in Macroeconomics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 181-86, May.
- Lazear, Edward P, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726, August.
- Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-44, June.
- Maia Güell & Barbara Petrongolo, 2000. "Workers Transitions from Temporary to Permanent Employment: the Spanish Case," CEP Discussion Papers dp0438, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.