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A Conjecture on the Explanation for High Unemployment in the Industrialized Nations : Part I

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  • Oswald Andrew J.

Abstract

The paper conjectures that the high unemployment of the Western economies has been produced by the decline of the private house-rental market and the rise of home-ownership. Evidence is provided for the developed nations, the states of the USA, and the regions of the UK, Italy, France and Sweden. Although its calculations should be viewed as tentative, the paper's results imply that a 10 percentage point rise in the owner-occupation rate is associated with an increase of approximately 2 percentage points in the unemployment rate. This would be sufficient to explain a significant part of the rise in joblessness in the industrialized countries.

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File URL: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/workingpapers/1995-1998/twerp_475.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Warwick, Department of Economics in its series The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) with number 475.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 1996
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wrk:warwec:475

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  1. Hughes, Gordon & McCormick, Barry & McCormick, Barry, 1987. "Housing markets, unemployment and labour market flexibility in the UK," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 615-641, April.
  2. 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.
  3. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 1991. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198284345, Octomber.
  4. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," NBER Working Papers 1950, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
  6. Calmfors, Lars, 1993. "Lessons from the macroeconomic experience of Sweden," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 25-72, March.
  7. Robert E. Hall, 1970. "Why Is the Unemployment Rate So High at Full Employment?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 1(3), pages 369-410.
  8. Rafael Di Tella & Robert J. MacCulloch, 2002. "The Determination of Unemployment Benefits," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(2), pages 404-434, Part.
  9. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver D, 1981. "Implicit Contracts, Moral Hazard, and Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(2), pages 301-07, May.
  10. Bover, Olympia & Muellbauer, John & Murphy, Anthony, 1989. "Housing, Wages and UK Labour Markets," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 51(2), pages 97-136, March.
  11. Wadsworth, Jonathan, 1998. "Eyes Down for a Full House: Labour Market Polarisation and the Housing Market in Britain," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 45(4), pages 376-92, September.
  12. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald, 2000. "Well-Being Over Time in Britain and the USA," NBER Working Papers 7487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Oswald, Andrew J, 1986. "Unemployment Insurance and Labor Contracts under Asymmetric Information: Theory and Facts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(3), pages 365-77, June.
  14. Alan A. Carruth & Mark A. Hooker & Andrew J. Oswald, 1998. "Unemployment Equilibria And Input Prices: Theory And Evidence From The United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(4), pages 621-628, November.
  15. Christofides, Louis N & Oswald, Andrew J, 1992. "Real Wage Determination and Rent-Sharing in Collective Bargaining Agreements," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(3), pages 985-1002, August.
  16. McCallum, John, 1983. "Inflation and Social Consensus in the Seventies," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 93(372), pages 784-805, December.
  17. Hughes, G A & McCormick, B, 1985. "Migration Intentions in the U.K.: Which Households Want to Migrate and Which Succeed?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 95(380a), pages 113-23, Supplemen.
  18. McCormick, Barry, 1983. "Housing and Unemployment in Great Britain," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 35(0), pages 283-305, Supplemen.
  19. Junankar, P.N. & Madsen, J.B., 1994. "Unemployment in the OECD: Models, Myths and Mysteries," Papers 278, Australian National University - Department of Economics.
  20. Anders Björklund, 1985. "Unemployment and Mental Health: Some Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 20(4), pages 469-483.
  21. Rowthorn, R E, 1977. "Conflict, Inflation and Money," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 1(3), pages 215-39, September.
  22. Henley, A, 1996. "Residential Mobility, Housing Wealth and the Labour Market," Working Papers 96-15, University of Wales, Aberystwyth, Department of Economics.
  23. Bentolila, Samuel & Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Firing Costs and Labour Demand: How Bad Is Eurosclerosis?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 381-402, July.
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  1. Study: Higher levels of homeownership can kill jobs
    by Brad Plumer in Ezra Klein's Wonkblog on 2013-05-07 16:11:16
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