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Matching Models Under Scrutiny : Understanding the Shimer Puzzle


  • Gabriele, CARDULLO

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))


Two papers have recently questioned the quantitative consistency of the search and matching models. Shimer (2005) has argued that a text-book matching model is unable to explain the cyclical variation of unemployment and vacancies in the U.S. economy. Costain and Reiter (2007) have found the existence of a trade-off in the model’s performance : any attempt to change the calibrated values in order to amend such business cycle inability would jeopardize the model’s predictions about the impact of unemployment benefits on the hazard rate. In surveying the literature originated in these findings, I distinguish three different avenues that have been followed to corret the model : change in wage formation, change in the calibration, changes in the model specification. The last approach seems to reach the best results both from a business cycle and from a microeconomic viewpoint.

Suggested Citation

  • Gabriele, CARDULLO, 2008. "Matching Models Under Scrutiny : Understanding the Shimer Puzzle," Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques) 2008009, Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques.
  • Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvec:2008009

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    Search-matching equilibrium; Business Cycles; Labour markets;

    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
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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