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Welfare Implications Of Heterogeneous Labor Markets In A Currency Area


  • Poilly, Céline
  • Sahuc, Jean-Guillaume


This paper investigates the role of labor markets heterogeneity in a monetary union and especially what are the welfare gains/costs of labor market reforms for each member of the area. To this end, we develop a medium-scale two-country model representing a currency union characterized by price and wage stickiness, real rigidities and labor market frictions. We make various scenarios of labor market reform and seek to determine the direction in which a country has an incentive to direct it from a welfare perspective. We find that the choice of the instrument to direct a reform (aiming at reducing the home unemployment rate) has drastic welfare implications in the union. Reforming the domestic labor market by a stronger regulation seems to give the best output. The analysis also shows that labor markets heterogeneity has sizeable effects on the amount of welfare gains, following a reform. The more flexible the foreign labor market, the higher its welfare. Finally, a sensitivity analysis shows that (i) the way the monetary authorities conduct their policy has negligible welfare effects but (ii) the size of a country in the monetary union is far to be neutral.
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  • Poilly, Céline & Sahuc, Jean-Guillaume, 2013. "Welfare Implications Of Heterogeneous Labor Markets In A Currency Area," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 17(02), pages 294-325, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:macdyn:v:17:y:2013:i:02:p:294-325_00

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Mirko Abbritti & Andreas I. Mueller, 2013. "Asymmetric Labor Market Institutions in the EMU and the Volatility of Inflation and Unemployment Differentials," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 45(6), pages 1165-1186, September.
    2. Raquel Fonseca & Lise Patureau & Thepthida Sopraseuth, 2009. "Divergence in Labor Market Institutions and International Business Cycles," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, pages 279-314.
    3. Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2010. "Price bargaining, the persistence puzzle, and monetary policy," Kiel Working Papers 1629, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    4. Dennis Wesselbaum, 2014. "Firing tax vs severance payments – an unequal comparison," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 41(5), pages 721-736, September.
    5. Verstegen, Loes, 2017. "On fiscal and monetary integration in Europe," Other publications TiSEM 49f73a6c-d32d-4dff-b5ec-4, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    6. Dennis Wesselbaum, 2015. "Firing costs in a business cycle model with endogenous separations," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 42(3), pages 499-518, August.
    7. Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2009. "Firing costs in a New Keynesian model with endogenous separations," Kiel Working Papers 1550, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    8. Poilly, Céline & Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2014. "Evaluating labor market reforms: A normative analysis," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 39(PA), pages 156-170.

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    JEL classification:

    • C3 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables
    • C5 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling


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