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Asymmetric information and overeducation

  • MENDOLICCHIO, Concetta

    (IAB, Spain)

  • PAOLINI, Dimitri

    (DEIR and CRENoS, Università di Sassari, Italy; Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium)

  • PIETRA, Tito

    (DSE, Università di Bologna, Italy)

We consider an economy where production may use labor of two different skill levels. Workers are heterogeneous and, by investing in education, self-select into one of the two skills. Ex-ante, when firms choose their investments in physical capital, they do not know the level of human capital prevailing in the labor market they will be active in. We prove existence and constrained inefficiency of competitive equilibria, which are always characterized by overeducation. An increase in total expected surplus can be obtained by shrinking, at the margin, the set of workers investing in high skill. This can be implemented by imposing taxes on the cost of investing in high skill or by imposing a progressive labor earning tax.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) in its series CORE Discussion Papers with number 2012021.

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Date of creation: 21 Jul 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2012021
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  1. Concetta Mendolicchio & Dimitri Paolini & Tito Pietra, 2014. "Income Taxes, Subsidies to Education, and Investments in Human Capital," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 16(1), pages 24-47, 02.
  2. Anderberg, Dan & Andersson, Fredrik, 2003. "Investments in human capital, wage uncertainty, and public policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(7-8), pages 1521-1537, August.
  3. Bas Jacobs & A. Lans Bovenberg, 2011. "Optimal Taxation of Human Capital and the Earnings Function," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 13(6), pages 957-971, December.
  4. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521715348 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. Bovenberg, A Lans & Jacobs, Bas, 2001. "Redistribution and Education Subsidies are Siamese Twins," CEPR Discussion Papers 3099, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Eaton, Jonathan & Rosen, Harvey S, 1980. "Taxation, Human Capital, and Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(4), pages 705-15, September.
  7. A. Lans Bovenberg & Bas Jacobs, 2005. "Redistribution and Education Subsidies are Siamese Twins," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 05-036/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  8. Daniel Heuermann & Benedikt Halfdanarson & Jens Suedekum, 2010. "Human Capital Externalities and the Urban Wage Premium: Two Literatures and their Interrelations," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 47(4), pages 749-767, April.
  9. Duranton, Gilles & Martin, Philippe & Mayer, Thierry & Mayneris, Florian, 2010. "The Economics of Clusters: Lessons from the French Experience," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199592203, March.
  10. Charlot, Olivier & Decreuse, Bruno, 2005. "Self-selection in education with matching frictions," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 251-267, April.
  11. Bas Jacobs & Dirk Schindler & Hongyan Yang, 2009. "Optimal Taxation of Risky Human Capital," CESifo Working Paper Series 2529, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. repec:cup:cbooks:9781107013940 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Poeschel, Friedrich, 2012. "The time trend in the matching function," IAB Discussion Paper 201203, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  14. Schmerer, Hans-Jörg, 2014. "Foreign direct investment and search unemployment: Theory and evidence," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 41-56.
  15. Acemoglu, Daron, 1996. "A Microfoundation for Social Increasing Returns in Human Capital Accumulation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(3), pages 779-804, August.
  16. A. Lans Bovenberg & Bas Jacobs, 2005. "Redistribution and Education Subsidies are Siamese Twins," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 05-036/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  17. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521887427 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. Bas Jacobs, 2005. "Optimal Income Taxation with Endogenous Human Capital," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 7(2), pages 295-315, 05.
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