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The Consumption-Tightness Puzzle

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  • Ravn, Morten O

Abstract

This paper introduces a labour force participation choice into a standard labour market matching model embedded in a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium set-up. The participation choice is modelled as a trade-off between forgoing the expected benefits of being search active and engaging in costly labour market search. In contrast to models with constant labour force participation, the model that we analyse induces a symmetry in firms' and workers' search decision since both sides of the labour market vary search effort at the extensive margins. We show that this set-up is (a) of considerable analytical convenience, and (b) that the introduction of a participation choice leads to a strong tendency for procyclical unemployment, very low volatility of labour market tightness, and for a positively sloped Beveridge curve. These implications are summarized by a linear relationship between the vu-ratio and the marginal utility of consumption that we refer to as the consumption-tightness puzzle given its counterfacutal implications. Moreover, we show that this relationship survives a number of extentions of the standard model and that it derives from the allowance for an endogeneous labour market participation choice.

Suggested Citation

  • Ravn, Morten O, 2006. "The Consumption-Tightness Puzzle," CEPR Discussion Papers 5670, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5670
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    Cited by:

    1. Ebell, Monique, 2011. "On the cyclicality of unemployment: Resurrecting the participation margin," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 822-836.
    2. de la Croix, David & Pierrard, Olivier & Sneessens, Henri R., 2013. "Aging and pensions in general equilibrium: Labor market imperfections matter," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 104-124.
    3. Wei Cui & Sören Radde, 2014. "Search-Based Endogenous Illiquidity and the Macroeconomy," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1367, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    4. Sekyu Choi & Alexandre Janiak & Benjamín Villena‐Roldán, 2015. "Unemployment, Participation and Worker Flows Over the Life‐Cycle," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 125(589), pages 1705-1733, December.
    5. Anna Batyra & David de la Croix & Olivier Pierrard & Henri Sneessens, 2016. "Structural changes in the labor market and the rise of early retirement in Europe," CREA Discussion Paper Series 16-13, Center for Research in Economic Analysis, University of Luxembourg.
    6. Brückner, Markus & Pappa, Evi, 2010. "Fiscal expansions affect unemployment, but they may increase it," CEPR Discussion Papers 7766, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. de la Croix, David & Pierrard, Olivier & Sneessens, Henri R., 2013. "Aging and pensions in general equilibrium: Labor market imperfections matter," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 104-124.
    8. Rotemberg, Julio J., 2008. "Minimally altruistic wages and unemployment in a matching model with monopsony," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(Supplemen), pages 97-110, October.
    9. Bermperoglu, Dimitrios & Pappa, Evi & Vella, Eugenia, 2013. "Spending-based austerity measures and their effects on output and unemployment," CEPR Discussion Papers 9383, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. James Costain & Marcel Jansen, 2010. "Employment Fluctuations with Downward Wage Rigidity: The Role of Moral Hazard," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 112(4), pages 782-811, December.
    11. Bandiera, Guilherme & Pappa, Evi & Sajedi, Rana & Vella, Eugenia, 2016. "Fiscal consolidation in a low inflation environment: pay cuts versus lost jobs," Bank of England working papers 628, Bank of England.
    12. Costain, James S. & Reiter, Michael, 2008. "Business cycles, unemployment insurance, and the calibration of matching models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 1120-1155, April.
    13. Den Haan, Wouter J. & Kaltenbrunner, Georg, 2009. "Anticipated growth and business cycles in matching models," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 309-327, April.
    14. Michael C. Burda & Mark Weder, 2016. "Payroll Taxes, Social Insurance, And Business Cycles," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 14(2), pages 438-467, April.
    15. Campolmi, Alessia & Gnocchi, Stefano, 2016. "Labor market participation, unemployment and monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 17-29.
    16. Bermperoglou, Dimitrios & Pappa, Evi & Vella, Eugenia, 2017. "The government wage bill and private activity," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 21-47.
    17. Ebell, Monique, 2008. "Resurrecting the participation margin," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19570, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    18. Pappa, Evi & Sajedi, Rana & Vella, Eugenia, 2015. "Fiscal consolidation with tax evasion and corruption," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(S1), pages 56-75.
    19. Matteo Salto, 2016. "Fiscal Policy after the Crisis – Workshop Proceedings," European Economy - Discussion Papers 2015 - 035, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    20. Batyra, Anna & de la Croix, David & Pierrard, Olivier & Sneessens, Henri R., 2013. "Declining bargaining power of workers and the rise of early retirement in Europe," GIAM Working Papers 13-6, Galatasaray University Economic Research Center.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    homework; intensive search margin; labour market participation; labour market tightness; matching models; unemployment;

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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