IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cep/cepdps/dp0839.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Unemployment Volatility Puzzle: Is Wage Stickiness the Answer?

Author

Listed:
  • Christopher A. Pissarides

Abstract

I study the cyclical behavior of an equilibrium search model with endogenous job creation and destruction, with focus on the model's failure to match the observed cyclical volatility of unemployment. Job creation in the model is influenced by wages in new matches. I summarize microeconometric evidence on wages in new matches and show that the key model elasticities are consistent with the evidence. Therefore explanations of the unemployment volatility puzzle have to preserve the cyclical volatility of wages. I discuss some extensions of the model that can increase cyclical unemployment volatility through mechanisms other than wage stickiness.

Suggested Citation

  • Christopher A. Pissarides, 2007. "The Unemployment Volatility Puzzle: Is Wage Stickiness the Answer?," CEP Discussion Papers dp0839, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0839
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://cep.lse.ac.uk/pubs/download/dp0839.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Yashiv, Eran, 2006. "Evaluating the performance of the search and matching model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 909-936, May.
    2. Christopher A. Pissarides, 2000. "Equilibrium Unemployment Theory, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262161877, December.
    3. Marcus Hagedorn & Iourii Manovskii, 2008. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies Revisited," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1692-1706, September.
    4. Dale Mortensen & Eva Nagypal, 2007. "More on Unemployment and Vacancy Fluctuations," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 10(3), pages 327-347, July.
    5. Haefke, Christian & Sonntag, Marcus & van Rens, Thijs, 2013. "Wage rigidity and job creation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(8), pages 887-899.
    6. Krause, M.U. & Lubik, T.A., 2004. "On-the-job Search and the Cyclical Dynamics of the Labor Market," Other publications TiSEM 08a72137-ff72-4e18-add3-1, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    7. John Kennan, 2010. "Private Information, Wage Bargaining and Employment Fluctuations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(2), pages 633-664.
    8. Gary Solon & Ryan Michaels & Michael W. L. Elsby, 2009. "The Ins and Outs of Cyclical Unemployment," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 84-110, January.
    9. Mortensen, Dale & Pissarides, Christopher, 2011. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in the Theory of Unemployment," Economic Policy, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, vol. 1, pages 1-19.
    10. Rudanko, Leena, 2009. "Labor market dynamics under long-term wage contracting," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 170-183, March.
    11. Robert E. Hall, 2005. "Job Loss, Job Finding, and Unemployment in the U.S. Economy Over the Past Fifty Years," NBER Working Papers 11678, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald, 1995. "The Wage Curve," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026202375x, December.
    13. Burcu Eyigungor, 2010. "Specific Capital and Vintage Effects on the Dynamics of Unemployment and Vacancies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(3), pages 1214-1237, June.
    14. Arozamena, Leandro & Centeno, Mario, 2006. "Tenure, business cycle and the wage-setting process," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 401-424, February.
    15. Anabela Carneiro & Pedro Portugal, 2004. "Workers' Flows and Real Wage Cyclicality," CEF.UP Working Papers 0402, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    16. repec:wop:calsdi:97-23 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Christopher A. Pissarides & Barbara Petrongolo, 2001. "Looking into the Black Box: A Survey of the Matching Function," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 390-431, June.
    18. Gary Solon & Robert Barsky & Jonathan A. Parker, 1994. "Measuring the Cyclicality of Real Wages: How Important is Composition Bias?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(1), pages 1-25.
    19. Paul J. Devereux & Robert A. Hart, 2006. "Real Wage Cyclicality of Job Stayers, Within-Company Job Movers, and Between-Company Job Movers," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 60(1), pages 105-119, October.
    20. Christopher A. Pissarides, 1994. "Search Unemployment with On-the-job Search," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(3), pages 457-475.
    21. Cole, Harold L & Rogerson, Richard, 1999. "Can the Mortensen-Pissarides Matching Model Match the Business-Cycle Facts?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 40(4), pages 933-959, November.
    22. Merz, Monika, 1995. "Search in the labor market and the real business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 269-300, November.
    23. Robert E. Hall & Paul R. Milgrom, 2008. "The Limited Influence of Unemployment on the Wage Bargain," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1653-1674, September.
    24. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, December.
    25. Yashiv, Eran, 2007. "Labor search and matching in macroeconomics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(8), pages 1859-1895, November.
    26. Julio J. Rotemberg, 2008. "Cyclical Wages in a Search-and-Bargaining Model with Large Firms," NBER Chapters, in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2006, pages 65-114, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    27. Barnichon, Regis, 2007. "Productivity, aggregate demand and unemployment fluctuations," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19694, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    28. Paul J. Devereux & Robert A. Hart, 2007. "The Spot Market Matters: Evidence On Implicit Contracts From Britain," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 54(5), pages 661-683, November.
    29. Donggyun Shin & Gary Solon, 2007. "New Evidence On Real Wage Cyclicality Within Employer–Employee Matches," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 54(5), pages 648-660, November.
    30. James S. Costain & Michael Reiter, 2003. "Business Cycles, Unemployment Insurance, and the Calibration of Matching Models," CESifo Working Paper Series 1008, CESifo.
    31. Darren Grant, 2003. "The Effect of Implicit Contracts on the Movement of Wages over the Business Cycle: Evidence from the National Longitudinal Surveys," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(3), pages 393-408, April.
    32. Bils, Mark J, 1985. "Real Wages over the Business Cycle: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(4), pages 666-689, August.
    33. Steven J. Davis & John Haltiwanger, 1992. "Gross Job Creation, Gross Job Destruction, and Employment Reallocation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(3), pages 819-863.
    34. Andreas Hornstein & Per Krusell & Giovanni L. Violante, 2005. "Unemployment and vacancy fluctuations in the matching model: inspecting the mechanism," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, vol. 91(Sum), pages 19-50.
    35. Blank, Rebecca M, 1990. "Why Are Wages Cyclical in the 1970s?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(1), pages 16-47, January.
    36. David Card, 1995. "The Wage Curve: A Review," Working Papers 722, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    37. Garey Ramey & Wouter J. den Haan & Joel Watson, 2000. "Job Destruction and Propagation of Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 482-498, June.
    38. James Ted McDonald & Christopher Worswick, 1999. "Wages, Implicit Contracts, and the Business Cycle: Evidence from Canadian Micro Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(4), pages 884-913, August.
    39. David Card, 1995. "The Wage Curve: A Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(2), pages 285-299, June.
    40. Shin, Donggyun, 1994. "Cyclicality of real wages among young men," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 137-142, October.
    41. Brandolini, Andrea, 1995. "In Search of a Stylised Fact: Do Real Wages Exhibit a Consistent Pattern of Cyclical Variability?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(2), pages 103-163, June.
    42. Robert Shimer, 2005. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 25-49, March.
    43. Costain, James S. & Reiter, Michael, 2008. "Business cycles, unemployment insurance, and the calibration of matching models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 1120-1155, April.
    44. Martin Neil Baily, 1974. "Wages and Employment under Uncertain Demand," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(1), pages 37-50.
    45. Shigeru Fujita & Garey Ramey, 2007. "Reassessing the Shimer facts," Working Papers 07-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
    46. Barro, Robert J., 1977. "Long-term contracting, sticky prices, and monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 305-316, July.
    47. Pissarides, Christopher A, 1985. "Short-run Equilibrium Dynamics of Unemployment Vacancies, and Real Wages," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 676-690, September.
    48. Azariadis, Costas, 1975. "Implicit Contracts and Underemployment Equilibria," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(6), pages 1183-1202, December.
    49. Robert Shimer, 2012. "Reassessing the Ins and Outs of Unemployment," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 15(2), pages 127-148, April.
    50. Paul J. Devereux, 2001. "The Cyclicality of Real Wages within Employer-Employee Matches," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 54(4), pages 835-850, July.
    51. Donald A. Walker (ed.), 2000. "Equilibrium," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, volume 0, number 1585.
    52. Michael Reiter, 2006. "Embodied technical change and the fluctuations of wages and unemployment," Economics Working Papers 980, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    53. Peng, Fei & Siebert, W. Stanley, 2007. "Real Wage Cyclicality in Germany and the UK: New Results Using Panel Data," IZA Discussion Papers 2688, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    54. Robert Shimer, 2004. "The Consequences of Rigid Wages in Search Models," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(2-3), pages 469-479, 04/05.
    55. Helge Braun & Reinout De Bock & Riccardo DiCecio, 2006. "Aggregate shocks and labor market fluctuations," Working Papers 2006-004, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    56. Robert E. Hall, 2005. "Employment Fluctuations with Equilibrium Wage Stickiness," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 50-65, March.
    57. Davis, Steven J. & Haltiwanger, John, 1999. "Gross job flows," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 41, pages 2711-2805, Elsevier.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Christopher A. Pissarides, 2007. "Unemployment And Hours Of Work: The North Atlantic Divide Revisited," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(1), pages 1-36, February.
    2. Haefke, Christian & Sonntag, Marcus & van Rens, Thijs, 2013. "Wage rigidity and job creation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(8), pages 887-899.
    3. Mark Gertler & Antonella Trigari, 2009. "Unemployment Fluctuations with Staggered Nash Wage Bargaining," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 117(1), pages 38-86, February.
    4. Rogerson, Richard & Shimer, Robert, 2011. "Search in Macroeconomic Models of the Labor Market," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 7, pages Pages: 61, Elsevier.
    5. repec:zbw:cfswop:wp200709 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Yashiv, Eran, 2007. "Labor search and matching in macroeconomics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(8), pages 1859-1895, November.
    7. Domenico Ferraro, 2018. "The Asymmetric Cyclical Behavior of the U.S. Labor Market," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 30, pages 145-162, October.
    8. Beauchemin, Kenneth & Tasci, Murat, 2014. "Diagnosing Labor Market Search Models: A Multiple-Shock Approach," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(3), pages 548-572, April.
    9. Mark Gertler & Luca Sala & Antonella Trigari, 2008. "An Estimated Monetary DSGE Model with Unemployment and Staggered Nominal Wage Bargaining," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(8), pages 1713-1764, December.
    10. Leena Rudanko, 2011. "Aggregate and Idiosyncratic Risk in a Frictional Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2823-2843, October.
    11. James Costain & Marcel Jansen, 2010. "Employment Fluctuations with Downward Wage Rigidity: The Role of Moral Hazard," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 112(4), pages 782-811, December.
    12. Kudlyak, Marianna, 2014. "The cyclicality of the user cost of labor," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 53-67.
    13. Hertweck, Matthias S. & Lewis, Vivien & Villa, Stefania, 2019. "Going the extra mile: Effort by workers and job-seekers," Discussion Papers 29/2019, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    14. Krause, M.U. & Lubik, T.A., 2004. "On-the-job Search and the Cyclical Dynamics of the Labor Market," Other publications TiSEM 08a72137-ff72-4e18-add3-1, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    15. Martins, Pedro S. & Solon, Gary & Thomas, Jonathan P., 2010. "Measuring What Employers Really Do about Entry Wages over the Business Cycle," IZA Discussion Papers 4757, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    16. Alejandro Justiniano & Claudio Michelacci, 2012. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies in the United States and Europe," NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(1), pages 169-235.
    17. Burcu Eyigungor, 2010. "Specific Capital and Vintage Effects on the Dynamics of Unemployment and Vacancies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(3), pages 1214-1237, June.
    18. Faccini, Renato & Ortigueira, Salvador, 2010. "Labor-market volatility in the search-and-matching model: The role of investment-specific technology shocks," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 34(8), pages 1509-1527, August.
    19. Kilponen, Juha & Vanhala, Juuso, 2009. "Productivity and job flows: heterogeneity of new hires and continuing jobs in the business cycle," Working Paper Series 1080, European Central Bank.
    20. Costain, James S. & Reiter, Michael, 2008. "Business cycles, unemployment insurance, and the calibration of matching models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 1120-1155, April.
    21. Miyamoto, Hiroaki, 2011. "Cyclical behavior of unemployment and job vacancies in Japan," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 214-225.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    wages; unemployment; wage stickiness; job creation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • E3 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0839. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: http://cep.lse.ac.uk/_new/publications/series.asp?prog=CEP .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://cep.lse.ac.uk/_new/publications/series.asp?prog=CEP .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.