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Optimal Fiscal Policy with Labor Selection

Listed author(s):
  • Sanjay K. Chugh

    (Boston College)

  • Wolfgang Lechthalerz

    (Kiel Institute for the World Economy)

  • Christian Merkl

    (Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg)

This paper characterizes long-run and short-run optimal fiscal policy in the labor selection framework. Quantitatively, the time-series volatility of the labor income tax rate is orders of magnitude larger than the "tax-smoothing" results based on Walrasian labor markets, but is a few times smaller than the results based on search and matching labor markets. To understand these results in terms of model primitives, we develop a welfare-relevant analytic concept of externalities for the selection model, which we label "tightness." This concept of tightness is the source of the decentralized economy's inefficient cross-sectional wage premia between the average newly-hired worker and the marginal newly-hired worker. Compared to the traditional concept of labor-market tightness in the search and matching literature, this new concept of tightness plays a highly similar role, and, like in the matching model, is crucial for understanding efficiency and optimal policy.

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Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 884.

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Date of creation: 25 Oct 2015
Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:884
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  1. Stefania Albanesi & Roc Armenter, 2012. "Intertemporal Distortions in the Second Best," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(4), pages 1271-1307.
  2. Faia, Ester & Lechthaler, Wolfgang & Merkl, Christian, 2012. "Labor selection, turnover costs and optimal monetary policy," Kiel Working Papers 1534, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  3. Chugh, Sanjay K. & Merkl, Christian, 2011. "Efficiency and labor market dynamics in a model of labor selection," Kiel Working Papers 1684, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  4. Brown, Alessio J G & Merkl, Christian & Snower, Dennis J., 2009. "An Incentive Theory of Matching," CEPR Discussion Papers 7283, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Siu, Henry E., 2004. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy with sticky prices," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 575-607, April.
  6. Lechthaler, Wolfgang & Merkl, Christian & Snower, Dennis J., 2010. "Monetary Persistence and the Labor Market: A New Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 7650, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Michaillat, Pascal & Saez, Emmanuel, 2016. "The Optimal Use of Government Purchases for Stabilization," CEPR Discussion Papers 11577, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Sanjay K. Chugh & David M. Arseneau, 2008. "Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policy in Customer Markets," 2008 Meeting Papers 101, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  9. Ljungqvist, Lars & Sargent, Thomas J., 2012. "Recursive Macroeconomic Theory, Third Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 3, volume 1, number 0262018748, September.
  10. Den Haan, Wouter J. & Kaltenbrunner, Georg, 2009. "Anticipated growth and business cycles in matching models," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 309-327, April.
  11. Matteo Cacciatore & Giuseppe Fiori, 2015. "Online Appendix to "The Macroeconomic Effects of Goods and Labor Marlet Deregulation"," Technical Appendices 14-313, Review of Economic Dynamics.
  12. Philip Jung & Keith Kuester, 2011. "Optimal labor-market policy in recessions," Working Papers 11-48, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  13. Mas-Colell, Andreu & Whinston, Michael D. & Green, Jerry R., 1995. "Microeconomic Theory," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195102680.
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