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Provincial Disparities and Structural Unemployment in Canada


  • Sandra Hanson MCPHERSON
  • Oscar FLORES


We examine Canadian provincial structural unemployment by estimating the unemployment-vacancy relationship (Beveridge curve) for ten provinces and find that from 1988 to 2002 structural unemployment fell primarily in western provinces. A breakdown of the causes of provincial structural unemployment using a SURE estimation reveals that the generosity of the employment insurance is an important variable in the West while the mix of structural variables appear to be important for central and eastern Canada. We are unaware of any other studies evaluating the Beveridge curve at the provincial level for this period which was one of historically high unemployment for Canada.

Suggested Citation

  • Sandra Hanson MCPHERSON & Oscar FLORES, 2012. "Provincial Disparities and Structural Unemployment in Canada," Regional and Sectoral Economic Studies, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 12(1), pages 25-42.
  • Handle: RePEc:eaa:eerese:v:12:y2012:i:1_2

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Richard Archambault & Mario Fortin, 2001. "The Beveridge curve and unemployment fluctuations in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(1), pages 58-81, February.
    2. Lars Osberg & Zhengxi Lin, 2000. "How Much of Canada's Unemployment is Structural?," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 26(s1), pages 141-157, July.
    3. Katharine G. Abraham, 1987. "Help-Wanted Advertising, Job Vacancies, and Unemployment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 18(1), pages 207-248.
    4. Wall, Howard J & Zoega, Gylfi, 2002. " The British Beveridge Curve: A Tale of Ten Regions," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 64(3), pages 261-280, July.
    5. Cote, D. & Hostland, D., 1996. "An Econometric Examination of the Trend Unemployment Rate in Canada," Staff Working Papers 96-7, Bank of Canada.
    6. Reid, Frank & Meltz, Noah M, 1979. "Causes of Shifts in the Unemployment-Vacancy Relationship: An Empirical Analysis for Canada," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 61(3), pages 470-475, August.
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    More about this item


    Beveridge curve in Canada; Structural unemployment in Canada; Provincial unemployment in Canada;

    JEL classification:

    • E00 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General - - - General
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population


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