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Public Policy and Unemployment in Interwar France: An Empirical Approach

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  • Tony Syme
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    Abstract

    This paper introduces an empirical model of the French interwar labour market that is comparable to models developed for the British labour market for this period, yet incorporates specific extensions in order to capture the peculiarities of the French case. The result is a model that can very accurately stimulate the movement of unemployment in the 1920s and 1930s and this is used to run a series of counterfactual simulations to estimate the labour market effects of various public policies adopted at the time. Of particular note is the result that the repatriation drive of the early 1930s had no significant effect on the size of foreign labour force by 1936 and that the decision to remain on the Gold Standard until 1936 raised unemployment each year by more than primary policies introduced to combat unemployment - public works and repatriation of foreign workers - reduced it.

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    File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/working_papers/paper055.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number 55.

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    Date of creation: 01 Dec 2000
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    Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:55

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    Keywords: France; unemployment; gold standard; repatriation; public works; 1930s; Popular Front;

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    1. Kokkelenberg, Edward C, 1983. "Interrelated Factor Demands Revisited," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(2), pages 342-47, May.
    2. Eichengreen, Barry & Hatton, Tim, 1988. "Interwar Unemployment in International Perspective," Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley qt7bw188gk, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley.
    3. Eichengreen, Barry & Sachs, Jeffrey, 1985. "Exchange Rates and Economic Recovery in the 1930s," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, vol. 45(04), pages 925-946, December.
    4. M. Ishaq Nadiri & Sherwin Rosen, 1974. "A Disequilibrium Model of Demand for Factors of Production," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number nadi74-1.
    5. Benjamin, Daniel K & Kochin, Levis A, 1979. "Searching for an Explanation of Unemployment in Interwar Britain," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(3), pages 441-78, June.
    6. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J, 1990. " Demand- and Supply-Side Policies and Unemployment: Policy Implications of the Insider-Outsider Approach," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 92(2), pages 279-305.
    7. Bernanke, Ben S, 1986. "Employment, Hours, and Earnings in the Depression: An Analysis of EightManufacturing Industries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 82-109, March.
    8. Dimsdale, Nicholas H & Horsewood, Nicholas, 1995. "Fiscal Policy and Employment in Interwar Britain: Some Evidence from a New Model," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 47(3), pages 369-96, July.
    9. Beenstock, Michael & Warburton, Peter J, 1986. "The Market for Labour in Interwar Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 105, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. Nadiri, M Ishaq & Rosen, Sherwin, 1969. "Interrelated Factor Demand Functions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 59(4), pages 457-71, Part I Se.
    11. Broadberry, S N, 1986. "Aggregate Supply in Interwar Britain," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(382), pages 467-81, June.
    12. Assar Lindbeck & Dennis J. Snower, 1989. "The Insider-Outsider Theory of Employment and Unemployment," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026262074x, December.
    13. Hatton, Timothy J., 1987. "A Quarterly Model of the Labour Market in Interwar Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 186, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    14. Jacques Marseille, 1980. "Les origines « inopportunes » de la crise de 1929 en France," Revue Économique, Programme National Persée, Programme National Persée, vol. 31(4), pages 648-684.
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