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Welfare-Improving Employment Protection

  • MICHELE BELOT
  • JAN BOONE
  • JAN VAN OURS

This paper derives new results on the welfare effects of employment protection. Using data from 17 OECD countries, we show that there exists an inverse U-shape relationship between employment protection and economic growth. Using a simple theoretical model with non-contractible specific investments, we show that over some range increasing employment protection does indeed raise welfare. We also show that the optimal level of employment protection depends on other labour market features, such as the bargaining power of workers and the existence of wage rigidities like the minimum wage. Copyright (c) The London School of Economics and Political Science 2007.

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Article provided by London School of Economics and Political Science in its journal Economica.

Volume (Year): 74 (2007)
Issue (Month): 295 (08)
Pages: 381-396

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Handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:74:y:2007:i:295:p:381-396
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  1. Bertola, Giuseppe & Rogerson, Richard, 1996. "Institutions and Labour Reallocation," CEPR Discussion Papers 1519, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Pissarides, Christopher A., 2001. "Employment protection," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 131-159, May.
  3. Richard Layard & Stephen Nickell, 1998. "Labour Market Institutions and Economic Performance," CEP Discussion Papers dp0407, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  4. Hosios, Arthur J, 1990. "On the Efficiency of Matching and Related Models of Search and Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 279-98, April.
  5. Hopenhayn, Hugo & Rogerson, Richard, 1993. "Job Turnover and Policy Evaluation: A General Equilibrium Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(5), pages 915-38, October.
  6. Kuhn, Peter, 1992. "Mandatory Notice," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(2), pages 117-37, April.
  7. Mortensen, Dale T & Pissarides, Christopher A, 1994. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in the Theory of Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 397-415, July.
  8. Etienne Wasmer, 2006. "Interpreting Europe and US labor markets differences : the specificity of human capital investments," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/8904, Sciences Po.
  9. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1998. "The Macroeconomics of Specificity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(4), pages 724-767, August.
  10. Belot, M.V.K. & van Ours, J.C., 2001. "Unemployment and labor market institutions : An empirical analysis," Other publications TiSEM 29a3de46-e7bc-4b3d-abe5-b, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  11. Belot, M.V.K. & van Ours, J.C., 2001. "Unemployment and Labor Market Institutions : An Empirical Analysis," Discussion Paper 2001-50, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  12. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521590730 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Booth, Alison L. & Zoega, Gylfi, 2003. "On the welfare implications of firing costs," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 759-775, November.
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