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Fixed-Term and Permanent Employment Contracts: Theory and Evidence

Author

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  • Shutao Cao
  • Enchuan Shao
  • Pedro Silos

Abstract

This paper constructs a theory of the coexistence of fixed-term and permanent employment contracts in an environment with ex-ante identical workers and employers. Workers under fixed-term contracts can be dismissed at no cost while permanent employees enjoy labor protection. In a labor market characterized by search and matching frictions, firms find it optimal to discriminate by offering some workers a fixedterm contract while offering other workers a permanent contract. Match-specific quality between a worker and a firm determines the type of contract offered. We analytically characterize the firm’s hiring and firing rules. Using matched employer-employee data from Canada, we estimate the model’s parameters. Increasing the level of firing costs increases wage inequality and decreases the unemployment rate. The increase in inequality results from a larger fraction of temporary workers and not from an increase in the wage premium earned by permanent workers.

Suggested Citation

  • Shutao Cao & Enchuan Shao & Pedro Silos, 2011. "Fixed-Term and Permanent Employment Contracts: Theory and Evidence," Staff Working Papers 11-21, Bank of Canada.
  • Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:11-21
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Marco Di Cintio & Emanuele Grassi, 2015. "Wage Incentive Profiles in Dual Labour Markets," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 82(328), pages 790-812, October.
    2. Etienne Wasmer & Nicolas Lepage-Saucier & Juliette Schleich, 2013. "Moving towards a single labour contract: pros, cons and mixed feelings," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/772g8m5php8, Sciences Po.
    3. Elsayyad, May & Konrad, Kai A., 2012. "Fighting multiple tax havens," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, pages 295-305.
    4. Pierre Cahuc & Olivier Charlot & Franck Malherbet, 2016. "Explaining The Spread Of Temporary Jobs And Its Impact On Labor Turnover," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 57, pages 533-572, May.
    5. Charlot, Olivier & Malherbet, Franck, 2013. "Education and employment protection," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(C), pages 3-23.
    6. Paqueo, Vicente B. & Orbeta, Aniceto Jr. C., 2016. "Beware of the "End Contractualization!" Battle Cry," Discussion Papers DP 2015-55, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
    7. Paqueo, Vicente B. & Orbeta, Aniceto Jr. C., 2016. "Beware of the "End Contractualization!" Battle Cry," Discussion Papers DP 2016-55, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
    8. Elsayyad, May & Konrad, Kai A., 2012. "Fighting multiple tax havens," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, pages 295-305.
    9. repec:eee:labeco:v:46:y:2017:i:c:p:26-46 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Renato Faccini, 2008. "Reassessing Labor Market Reforms: Temporary Contracts as a Screening Device," Economics Working Papers ECO2008/27, European University Institute.
    11. Tealdi, Cristina, 2011. "How do employment contract reforms affect welfare? Theory and evidence," MPRA Paper 33573, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. David Amirault & Paul Fenton & Thérèse Laflèche, 2013. "Asking About Wages: Results from the Bank of Canada’s Wage Setting Survey of Canadian Companies," Discussion Papers 13-1, Bank of Canada.
    13. Renato Faccini, 2014. "Reassessing Labour Market Reforms: Temporary Contracts as a Screening Device," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(575), pages 167-200, March.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labour markets; Potential output; Productivity;

    JEL classification:

    • H29 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Other
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy

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