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Turbulence and unemployment in a job matching model

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  • Wouter J. Den Haan
  • Christian Haefke
  • Garey Ramey

Abstract

According to Ljungqvist and Sargent (1998), high European unemployment since the 1980s can be explained by a rise in economic turbulence, leading to greater numbers of unemployed workers with obsolete skills. These workers refuse new jobs due to high unemployment benefits. In this paper we reassess the turbulence-unemployment relationship using a matching model with endogenous job destruction. In our model, higher turbulence reduces the incentives of employed workers to leave their jobs. If turbulence has only a tiny effect on the skills of workers experiencing endogenous separation, then the results of Lungqvist and Sargent (1998, 2004) are reversed, and higher turbulence leads to a reduction in unemployment. Thus, changes in turbulence cannot provide an explanation for European unemployment that reconciles the incentives of both unemployed and employed workers.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 792.

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Date of creation: Nov 2004
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Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:792

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Keywords: Skill loss; European unemployment puzzle;

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  7. den Haan, Wouter J. & Ramey, Garey & Watson, Joel, 1999. "Job Destruction and the Experiences of Displaced Workers," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt1rd0w96t, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  8. McLaughlin, Kenneth J, 1991. "A Theory of Quits and Layoffs with Efficient Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(1), pages 1-29, February.
  9. Hall, Robert E., 1999. "Labor-market frictions and employment fluctuations," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 17, pages 1137-1170 Elsevier.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Felix Reichling, 2005. "Retraining the Unemployed in a Matching Model with Turbulence," Discussion Papers 04-016, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  2. Andreas Hornstein & Per Krusell & Giovanni L. Violante, 2006. "Technology-policy interaction in frictional labor markets," Working Paper 06-10, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  3. Georg Duernecker, 2008. "Technology Adoption, Turbulence and the Dynamics of Unemployment," Economics Working Papers ECO2008/10, European University Institute.
  4. Simon Burgess & Helene Turon, 2005. "Worker Flows, Job Flows and Unemployment in a Matching Model," Bristol Economics Discussion Papers 05/572, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  5. Mathan Satchi & Jonathan Temple, 2006. "Growth and labour markets in developing countries," CEDI Discussion Paper Series 06-12, Centre for Economic Development and Institutions(CEDI), Brunel University.
  6. Philip Schuster, 2010. "Labor Market Policy Instruments and the Role of Economic Turbulence," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2010 2010-29, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
  7. Gervais, Martin & Livshits, Igor & Meh, Césaire, 2008. "Uncertainty and the specificity of human capital," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 143(1), pages 469-498, November.
  8. Shigeru Fujita, 2012. "Labor market anxiety and the downward trend in the job separation rate," Business Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, issue Q4, pages 1-7.
  9. Kienzler, Daniel, 2012. "Long-term Unemployment over the Business Cycle, Skill Loss, and Monetary Policy," Working Papers on Finance 1205, University of St. Gallen, School of Finance.
  10. Krause, Michael U. & Uhlig, Harald, 2012. "Transitions in the German labor market: Structure and crisis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 64-79.
  11. Shigeru Fujita, 2011. "Declining labor turnover and turbulence," Working Papers 11-44, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  12. Ekkehard Ernst & Uma Rani, 2011. "Understanding unemployment flows," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 27(2), pages 268-294.
  13. Hahn, Volker, 2009. "Search, unemployment, and age," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1361-1378, June.

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