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Labor Mobility in a Monetary Union

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  • Daniela Hauser
  • Martin Seneca

Abstract

The optimal currency literature has stressed the importance of labor mobility as a precondition for the success of monetary unions. But only a few studies formally link labor mobility to macroeconomic adjustment and policy. In this paper, we study macroeconomic dynamics and optimal monetary policy in an economy with cyclical labor flows across two distinct regions that share trade links and a common monetary framework. In our New Keynesian dynamic, stochastic, general-equilibrium model calibrated to the United States, migration flows are driven by fluctuations in the relative labor market performance across the monetary union. While labor mobility can be an additional channel for cross-regional spillovers as well as a regional shock absorber, we find that a mobile labor force closes the efficiency gaps in the labor market and thus lessens the trade-off between inflation and labor market stabilization. As migration flows are generally inefficient, however, regionspecific disturbances introduce additional trade-offs with regional labor market conditions. Putting some weight on stabilizing fluctuations in the labor market enhances welfare when monetary policy follows a simple rule.

Suggested Citation

  • Daniela Hauser & Martin Seneca, 2019. "Labor Mobility in a Monetary Union," Staff Working Papers 19-15, Bank of Canada.
  • Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:19-15
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Carl Walsh, 2014. "Multiple Objectives and Central Bank Tradeoffs under Flexible Inflation Targeting," CESifo Working Paper Series 5097, CESifo Group Munich.
    2. Emmanuel Farhi & Ivan Werning, 2014. "Labor Mobility Within Currency Unions," Working Paper 165206, Harvard University OpenScholar.
    3. Frank Smets & Rafael Wouters, 2007. "Shocks and Frictions in US Business Cycles: A Bayesian DSGE Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 586-606, June.
    4. Pappa, Evi, 2004. "Do the ECB and the fed really need to cooperate? Optimal monetary policy in a two-country world," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 753-779, May.
    5. Bruce C. Greenwald & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1986. "Externalities in Economies with Imperfect Information and Incomplete Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(2), pages 229-264.
    6. Guilherme Bandeira & Jordi Caballé & Eugenia Vella, 2018. "Should I stay or should I go? Austerity, unemployment and migration," Working Papers 1839, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
    7. Christopher J. Flinn, 2006. "Minimum Wage Effects on Labor Market Outcomes under Search, Matching, and Endogenous Contact Rates," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(4), pages 1013-1062, July.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Labor Mobility in a Monetary Union
      by Christian Zimmermann in NEP-DGE blog on 2019-04-27 12:48:16

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Business fluctuations and cycles; Economic models; Labour markets; Monetary policy framework; Regional economic developments;

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • F4 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance

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