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Product Market Reforms, Labour Market Institutions and Unemployment

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  • Rachel Griffith
  • Rupert Harrison
  • Gareth Macartney

Abstract

We analyse the impact of product market competition on unemployment, and how this depends on labour market institutions. Theoretically, both firms with market power and unions with bargaining power are constrained in their behaviour by the elasticity of demand in the product market. We use differential changes in regulations across OECD countries over the 1980s and 1990s to identify the effects of competition. We find that increased competition reduces unemployment, more so in countries with labour market institutions that increase worker bargaining power. We also find that competition increases real wages but less so when bargaining power is high. Copyright 2007 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2007.

Suggested Citation

  • Rachel Griffith & Rupert Harrison & Gareth Macartney, 2007. "Product Market Reforms, Labour Market Institutions and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(519), pages 142-166, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:117:y:2007:i:519:p:c142-c166
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Belot, Michele & van Ours, Jan C., 2001. "Unemployment and Labor Market Institutions: An Empirical Analysis," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 403-418, December.
    2. Marianne Bertrand & Francis Kramarz, 2002. "Does Entry Regulation Hinder Job Creation? Evidence from the French Retail Industry," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1369-1413.
    3. Nickell, Stephen, 1999. "Product markets and labour markets1," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 1-20, March.
    4. Giuseppe Nicoletti & Stefano Scarpetta, 2005. "Product Market Reforms and Employment in OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 472, OECD Publishing.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J50 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - General
    • L50 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - General

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