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GDP-employment decoupling in Germany

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  • Klinger, Sabine
  • Weber, Enzo

Abstract

This paper investigates the time-varying relationship between German output and employment growth, in particular their decoupling in recent years. We estimate a correlated unobserved components model that allows for persistent and cyclical time variation in the employment-GDP linkage as well as an additional employment component beyond the one linked to GDP. Controlling for the latter yields a more precise classification of what is a jobless recovery or a labour hoarding recession. We find that the comovement of employment and GDP has loosened permanently since the Great Recession while the comovement with other variables than GDP has become tighter. The decoupling goes hand in hand with the change of the sectoral composition of the economy, especially the rise of the service sector. Beyond that, high labour market tightness and at the same time high labour supply carried recent employment growth. The industry mix, wages and working time had a smaller influence.

Suggested Citation

  • Klinger, Sabine & Weber, Enzo, 2020. "GDP-employment decoupling in Germany," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 82-98.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:streco:v:52:y:2020:i:c:p:82-98
    DOI: 10.1016/j.strueco.2019.10.003
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    GDP; Employment; Decoupling; Unobserved components; Time-varying coefficient;
    All these keywords.

    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
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models

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