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Monopolistic Competition, Efficiency Wages and Perverse Effects of Demand Shock

  • Jim Malley
  • Hassan Molana

In this paper we construct a stylised general equilibrium macromodel to show that demand led expansions may have unexpected effects when market imperfections lead to changes in labour productivity. We find some empirical support, from a number of European countries, for the main predictions of this model that unemployment and output are positively related when unemployment is low and inversely related when unemployment is high. An important policy insight that emerges from this study is that an exogenous stimulation of aggregate demand can only raise output and reduce unemployment provided the economy is operating relatively efficiently. However, when an economy is trapped in an inefficient equilibrium, positive demand shocks can lead, perversely, to an increase in unemployment.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 475.

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Date of creation: 2001
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_475
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  1. Reinhorn, Leslie J., 1998. "Imperfect competition, the Keynesian cross, and optimal fiscal policy," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 331-337, March.
  2. Chatrerji, Monojit & Sparks, Roger, 1991. "Real wages, productivity, and the cycle: An efficiency wage model," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 495-510.
  3. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1998. "The Macroeconomics of Specificity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(4), pages 724-767, August.
  4. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1991. "Growth and Unemployment," CEPR Discussion Papers 577, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Disney, Richard F & Haskel, Jonathan & Heden, Ylva, 2000. "Restructuring And Productivity Growth In UK Manufacturing," CEPR Discussion Papers 2463, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1995. "A positive theory of social security," Economics Working Papers 108, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  7. Fender, John & Yip, Chong K., 1993. "Monetary policies in an intertemporal macroeconomic model with imperfect competition," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 439-453.
  8. Heijdra, Ben J & van der Ploeg, Frederick, 1996. "Keynesian Multipliers and the Cost of Public Funds under Monopolistic Competition," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(438), pages 1284-96, September.
  9. Richard Startz, 1989. "Monopolistic Competition as a Foundation for Keynesian Macroeconomic Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(4), pages 737-752.
  10. Molana, Hassan & Moutos, Thomas, 1992. "A Note on Taxation, Imperfect Competition and the Balanced Budget Multiplier," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(1), pages 68-74, January.
  11. Aghion, P. & Howitt, P., 1989. "A Model Of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Working papers 527, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  12. Dixon, Huw, 1987. "A Simple Model of Imperfect Competition with Walrasian Features," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 39(1), pages 134-60, March.
  13. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Kiyotaki, Nobuhiro, 1987. "Monopolistic Competition and the Effects of Aggregate Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 647-66, September.
  14. Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-44, June.
  15. Dixon, Huw, 1990. "Imperfect Competition, Unemployment Benefit and the Non-neutrality of Money: An Example," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(2), pages 402-13, April.
  16. Olivier Blanchard, 1998. "Revisiting European Unemployment: Unemployment, Capital Accumulation, and Factor Prices," NBER Working Papers 6566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Jim Malley & Thomas Moutos, 2000. "Capital Accumulation and Unemployment: A Tale of Two "Continents"," CESifo Working Paper Series 236, CESifo Group Munich.
  18. Dixon, Huw & Lawler, Phillip, 1996. " Imperfect Competition and the Fiscal Multiplier," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 98(2), pages 219-31, June.
  19. N. Gregory Mankiw, 1987. "Imperfect Competition and the Keynesian Cross," NBER Working Papers 2386, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Danthine, Jean-Pierre & Donaldson, John B., 1990. "Efficiency wages and the business cycle puzzle," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(7), pages 1275-1301, November.
  21. Heijdra, Ben J & Ligthart, Jenny E & van der Ploeg, Frederick, 1998. "Fiscal Policy, Distortionary Taxation, and Direct Crowding Out under Monopolistic Competition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(1), pages 79-88, January.
  22. Hoon, Hian Teck & Phelps, Edmund S, 1992. "Macroeconomic Shocks in a Dynamized Model of the Natural Rate of Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 889-900, September.
  23. Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1992. "Capital markets and economic fluctuations in capitalist economies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(2-3), pages 269-306, April.
  24. Thomas Moutos, 1989. "Turnover Costs, Unemployment and Macroeconomic Policies," Working Papers Series 89/5, University of Stirling, Division of Economics.
  25. Oliver Hart, 1982. "A Model of Imperfect Competition with Keynesian Features," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 97(1), pages 109-138.
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