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The Cyclical Behaviour of Wages and Profits under Imperfect Competition


  • Steve Ambler
  • Emanuela Cardia


The authors build a dynamic model of the business cycle with monopolistically competitive firms. With simple assumptions concerning firm entry and exit, the model can explain some stylized facts of the business cycle that standard real business cycle models cannot predict. They include the cyclical behavior of the shares of capital and labor income in total income and the pattern of net firm creation. These predictions are robust to whether the main source of the business cycle is aggregate supply shocks or aggregate demand shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Steve Ambler & Emanuela Cardia, 1998. "The Cyclical Behaviour of Wages and Profits under Imperfect Competition," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 148-164, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:31:y:1998:i:1:p:148-164

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ambler, Steve & Paquet, Alain, 1996. "Fiscal spending shocks, endogenous government spending, and real business cycles," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-3), pages 237-256.
    2. Ambler, Steven & Cardia, Emanuela & Phaneuf, Louis, 1992. "Contrats de salaire, croissance endogène et fluctuations," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 68(1), pages 175-204, mars et j.
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    Cited by:

    1. Florin O. Bilbiie & Fabio Ghironi & Marc J. Melitz, 2012. "Endogenous Entry, Product Variety, and Business Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 120(2), pages 304-345.
    2. Huw Dixon & ANTHONY SAVAGAR, 2017. "The Effect of Firm Entry on Capacity Utilization and Macroeconomic Productivity," 2017 Meeting Papers 1130, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Rotemberg, Julio J. & Woodford, Michael, 1999. "The cyclical behavior of prices and costs," Handbook of Macroeconomics,in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 16, pages 1051-1135 Elsevier.
    4. Florin O. Bilbiie & Fabio Ghironi & Marc J. Melitz, 2008. "Monetary Policy and Business Cycles with Endogenous Entry and Product Variety," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2007, Volume 22, pages 299-353 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Ríos-Rull, José-Víctor & Santaeulàlia-Llopis, Raül, 2010. "Redistributive shocks and productivity shocks," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(8), pages 931-948, November.
    6. Hernando Zuleta, 2007. "Biased technological change, human capital and factor shares," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 004380, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO.
    7. Enchuan Shao & Pedro Silos, 2008. "Firm entry and labor market dynamics," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2008-17, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    8. Macallan, Clare & Millard, Stephen & Parker, Miles, 2008. "The cyclicality of mark-ups and profit margins for the United Kingdom: some new evidence," Bank of England working papers 351, Bank of England.
    9. Burda, Michael C. & Weder, Mark, 1998. "Endogenes Wachstum, gleichgewichtige Arbeitslosigkeit und persistente Konjunkturzyklen," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1999,9, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
    10. Jinill Kim, 1997. "Three sources of increasing returns to scale," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1997-18, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    11. Alain Gabler, 2007. "Sector-specific Markup Fluctuations and the Business Cycle," Economics Working Papers ECO2007/25, European University Institute.
    12. Kim, Jinill, 2004. "What determines aggregate returns to scale?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(8), pages 1577-1594, June.
    13. Shao, Enchuan & Silos, Pedro, 2013. "Entry costs and labor market dynamics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 243-255.
    14. Cook, David, 2001. "Time to enter and business cycles," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 25(8), pages 1241-1261, August.
    15. Igor Fedotenkov & Lex Meijdam, 2014. "Pension reform with migration and mobile capital: is a Pareto improvement possible?," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 431-450, September.
    16. Hernando Zuleta & Andrew T. Young, 2007. "Labor's shares - aggregate and industry: accounting for both in a model of unbalanced growth with induced innovation," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 003105, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO.
    17. Fedotenkov, I., 2012. "Pensions and ageing in a globalizing world. International spillover effects via trade and factor mobility," Other publications TiSEM 8830bc21-4138-4479-8459-a, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy


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