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Trade and frictional unemployment in the global economy

Listed author(s):
  • Carrère, Céline
  • Grujovic, Anja
  • Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric

We develop a multi-country, multi-sector trade model with labor market frictions and structural equilibrium unemployment. Trade opening leads to a reduction in unemployment if it raises real wages and reallocates labor towards sectors with lower-than-average labor market frictions. We estimate sector-specific labor market frictions from 25 OECD countries and the trade parameters of the model using worldwide trade data. We then quantify the potential unemployment and real wage effects of implementing the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) or the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and of eliminating trade imbalances worldwide. The unemployment and real wage effects sometimes work in opposite directions for some countries, such as the US under TTIP. We introduce a welfare criterion that accounts for both effects and splits such ties. Accordingly, US welfare is predicted to decrease under TTIP.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 10692.

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Date of creation: Jul 2015
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:10692
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