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The effect of working time and labor force participation on unemployment: A new argument in an old debate

  • Lührmann, Melanie
  • Weiss, Matthias

This paper introduces a new argument into the theoretical literature on labor market effects of changes in working hours and labor force participation. We advance a general equilibrium model in which increased labor supply reduces unskilled unemployment via consumer demand: longer work hours and higher labor force participation imply higher incomes and less (leisure) time. In consequence, home production is reduced in favor of outsourcing domestic tasks to the market, shifting consumer demand toward unskill-intensive goods. Relative demand for unskilled labor rises and unemployment falls. Finally, we provide empirical support for the basic mechanisms of our model for Germany.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economic Modelling.

Volume (Year): 27 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 67-82

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:27:y:2010:i:1:p:67-82
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/30411

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  17. Matthias Weiss, 2004. "Skill-Biased Technological Change: Is there Hope for the Unskilled?," MEA discussion paper series 04045, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
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