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Options to Quit

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  • Pfann, Gerard Antonie

Abstract

This paper develops a theoretical model of optimal quit behaviour for a worker who holds an option to quit but faces a fixed cost of quitting. A worker will accept the outside offer only if the net present value of the difference in expected future cash flows associated with the old and the new job exceeds the costs of quitting plus the value of keeping the option to quit open. The implications of the model are consistent with some empirical facts of quit behaviour that we observe in manufacturing data in the US and in plant level data in The Netherlands.

Suggested Citation

  • Pfann, Gerard Antonie, 2000. "Options to Quit," CEPR Discussion Papers 2563, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2563
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. John T. Addison & Pedro Portugal, 1987. "The Effect of Advance Notification of Plant Closings on Unemployment," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 41(1), pages 3-16, October.
    2. Hamermesh, Daniel S & Pfann, Gerard A, 1996. "Turnover and the Dynamics of Labour Demand," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 63(251), pages 359-367, August.
    3. Hall, Robert E & Lazear, Edward P, 1984. "The Excess Sensitivity of Layoffs and Quits to Demand," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(2), pages 233-257, April.
    4. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 5474.
    5. Jacobson, Louis S & LaLonde, Robert J & Sullivan, Daniel G, 1993. "Earnings Losses of Displaced Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 685-709, September.
    6. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1979. "Job Matching and the Theory of Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 972-990, October.
    7. Louis S. Jacobson & Robert J. LaLonde & Daniel G. Sullivan, 1993. "Long-term earnings losses of high-seniority displaced workers," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Nov, pages 2-20.
    8. Merton, Robert C., 1976. "Option pricing when underlying stock returns are discontinuous," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(1-2), pages 125-144.
    9. Robert McDonald & Daniel Siegel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-727.
    10. Pindyck, Robert S, 1991. "Irreversibility, Uncertainty, and Investment," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(3), pages 1110-1148, September.
    11. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1979. "Firm-specific Capital and Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1246-1260, December.
    12. Sherwin Rosen, 1972. "Learning and Experience in the Labor Market," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 7(3), pages 326-342.
    13. McLaughlin, Kenneth J, 1991. "A Theory of Quits and Layoffs with Efficient Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(1), pages 1-29, February.
    14. Gray, Jo Anna, 1978. "On Indexation and Contract Length," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(1), pages 1-18, February.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Gerard A. Pfann & Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2000. "Two-Sided Learning, Labor Turnover, and Worker Displacement," Working Papers 0021, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
    2. Alain Delacroix & Etienne Wasmer, 2007. "Job and Workers Flows in Europe and the US: Specific Skills or Employment Protection?," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/9938, Sciences Po.
    3. Dohmen, Thomas J. & Pfann, Gerard A., 2004. "Worker separations in a nonstationary corporate environment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 645-663, June.
    4. Pfann, Gerard A. & Blumberg, Boris F., 2001. "Social Capital and the Uncertainty Reduction of Self-Employment," IZA Discussion Papers 303, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Pfann Gerard A. & Hamermesh Daniel S., 2008. "Two-Sided Learning with Applications to Labor Turnover and Worker Displacement," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 228(5-6), pages 423-445, October.
    6. Osorno Del Rosal, Mª P., 2003. "La búsqueda de empleo de los ocupados: intensidad y motivos," Estudios de Economía Aplicada, Estudios de Economía Aplicada, vol. 21, pages 151-174, Abril.
    7. Wossink, Ada & Kuminoff, Nicolai V., 2005. "Valuing the Option to Switch to Organic Farming: An Application to U.S. Corn and Soybeans," 2005 International Congress, August 23-27, 2005, Copenhagen, Denmark 24716, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Kuminoff, Nicolai V. & Wossink, Ada, 2005. "Valuing the Option to Convert from Conventional to Organic Farming," 2005 Annual meeting, July 24-27, Providence, RI 19531, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    9. Gielen, Anne C. & Tatsiramos, Konstantinos, 2012. "Quit behavior and the role of job protection," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 624-632.
    10. Gerard A. Pfann & Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2001. "Two-Sided Learning, Labor Turnover and Displacement," NBER Working Papers 8273, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Downsizing; Fixed Costs; Job Mobility; Timing; Voluntary Turnover;

    JEL classification:

    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs

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