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How Large are Search Frictions?

  • Gautier, Pieter A
  • Teulings, Coen N

This paper shows that we can normalize job and worker characteristics such that without frictions there exists a linear relationship between wages on the one hand and worker and job type indices on the other. However, for five European countries and the US we find strong evidence for a systematic concave relation. An assignment model with search frictions provides a parsimonious explanation for our findings. This model yields two restrictions on the coefficients that fit the data well. Allowing for unobserved heterogeneity and measurement error we find that reservation wages are 25% lower than they would be in a frictionless world. Our results relate to the literature on industry wage differentials and on structural identification in hedonic models.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 5229.

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Date of creation: Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5229
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References listed on IDEAS
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  1. Shimer, R. & Smith, L., 1997. "Assortative Matching and Search," Working papers 97-2a, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Fabien Postel-Vinay & Jean-Marc Robin, 2002. "Equilibrium Wage Dispersion with Worker and Employer Heterogeneity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(6), pages 2295-2350, November.
  3. Ivar Ekeland & James J. Heckman & Lars P. Nesheim, 2003. "Identification and Estimation of Hedonic Models," NBER Working Papers 9910, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Gerard J. van den Berg & Geert Ridder, 1998. "An Empirical Equilibrium Search Model of the Labor Market," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(5), pages 1183-1222, September.
  5. Kahn, Shulamit & Lang, Kevin, 1988. "Efficient Estimation of Structural Hedonic Systems," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 29(1), pages 157-66, February.
  6. repec:oup:qjecon:v:107:y:1992:i:1:p:35-78 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Gautier, P.A. & Teulings, C.N., 2009. "Search and the city," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 251-265, May.
  8. Sattinger, Michael, 1975. "Comparative Advantage and the Distributions of Earnings and Abilities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(3), pages 455-68, May.
  9. John M. Abowd & Francis Kramarz & David Margolis, 1999. "High Wage Workers and High Wage Firms," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00353892, HAL.
  10. repec:oup:qjecon:v:108:y:1993:i:4:p:983-1014 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Gerard J. van den Berg, 1998. "Empirical Inference with Equilibrium Search Models of the Labor Market," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 98-089/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  12. Bound, John & Krueger, Alan B, 1991. "The Extent of Measurement Error in Longitudinal Earnings Data: Do Two Wrongs Make a Right?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(1), pages 1-24, January.
  13. Coen N. Teulings & Pieter A. Gautier, 2000. "The Right Man for the Job," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 00-038/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  14. Gautier, Pieter A & Teulings, Coen N & van Vuuren, Aico, 2006. "On-the-Job Search and Sorting," CEPR Discussion Papers 5575, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Coen N. Teulings, 2005. "Comparative Advantage, Relative Wages, and the Accumulation of Human Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 425-461, April.
  16. Krueger, Alan B & Summers, Lawrence H, 1988. "Efficiency Wages and the Inter-industry Wage Structure," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 259-93, March.
  17. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1979. "Job Matching and the Theory of Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 972-90, October.
  18. John M. Abowd & Thomas Lemieux, 1991. "The Effects of Product Market Competition on Collective Bargaining Agreements: The Case of Foreign Competition in Canada," NBER Working Papers 3808, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Heckman, James J & Sedlacek, Guilherme, 1985. "Heterogeneity, Aggregation, and Market Wage Functions: An Empirical Model of Self-selection in the Labor Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1077-1125, December.
  20. repec:inr:wpaper:155908 is not listed on IDEAS
  21. repec:oup:qjecon:v:106:y:1991:i:4:p:979-1014 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Teulings, Coen N, 1995. "The Wage Distribution in a Model of the Assignment of Skills to Jobs," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(2), pages 280-315, April.
  23. John M. Abowd (corresponding) & Francis Kramarz, 2004. "Are Good Workers Employed by Good Firms? A Simple Test of Positive Assortative Matching Models," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 385, Econometric Society.
  24. William T. Dickens & Lawrence F. Katz, 1987. "Inter-Industry Wage Differences and Theories of Wage Determination," NBER Working Papers 2271, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:108:y:1993:i:4:p:983-1014 is not listed on IDEAS
  26. Rosen, Sherwin, 1974. "Hedonic Prices and Implicit Markets: Product Differentiation in Pure Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(1), pages 34-55, Jan.-Feb..
  27. Coen N. Teulings, 2002. "Comparative Advantage, Relative Wages, and the Accumulation of Human Capital," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 02-081/3, Tinbergen Institute, revised 08 Apr 2005.
  28. Kenneth Burdett & Dale T. Mortensen, 1989. "Equilibrium Wage Differentials and Employer Size," Discussion Papers 860, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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