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The Effect of Government Size on the Steady-State Unemployment Rate: A Structural Error Correction Model

Author

Listed:
  • Burton A. Abrams

    () (Department of Economics,University of Delaware)

  • Siyan Wang

    () (Department of Economics,University of Dela)

Abstract

In this paper, we investigate the relationship between government size and the unemployment rate using a structural error correction model that describes both the short-run dynamics and long-run determination of the unemployment rate. Using data from twenty OECD countries from 1970 to 1999, we find that government size, measured as total government outlays as a percentage of GDP, plays a significant role in affecting the steady-state unemployment rate. We disaggregate government outlays and find that transfers and subsidies significantly affect the steady-state unemployment rate while government expenditures on goods and services play no significant role.

Suggested Citation

  • Burton A. Abrams & Siyan Wang, 2006. "The Effect of Government Size on the Steady-State Unemployment Rate: A Structural Error Correction Model," Working Papers 06-05, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:dlw:wpaper:06-05
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    File URL: http://graduate.lerner.udel.edu/sites/default/files/ECON/PDFs/RePEc/dlw/WorkingPapers/2006/UDWP2006-05.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Michèle Belot & Jan C. van Ours, 2004. "Does the recent success of some OECD countries in lowering their unemployment rates lie in the clever design of their labor market reforms?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 621-642, October.
    2. Nickell, Stephen & Layard, Richard, 1999. "Labor market institutions and economic performance," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 46, pages 3029-3084 Elsevier.
    3. Karras, Georgios, 1993. "Employment and Output Effects of Government Spending: Is Government Size Important?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(3), pages 354-369, July.
    4. Blanchard, Olivier & Wolfers, Justin, 2000. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages 1-33, March.
    5. Juan C. Botero & Simeon Djankov & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "The Regulation of Labor," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1339-1382.
    6. Robert J. Barro & Paul Romer, 1993. "Economic Growth," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number barr93-1.
      • Robert J. Barro & Paul M. Romer, 1991. "Economic Growth," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number barr91-1.
    7. Stephen Nickell, 1997. "Unemployment and Labor Market Rigidities: Europe versus North America," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 55-74, Summer.
    8. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
    9. Horst Feldmann, 2006. "Government Size and Unemployment: Evidence from Industrial Countries," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 127(3), pages 443-459, June.
    10. Abrams, Burton A, 1999. "The Effect of Government Size on the Unemployment Rate," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 99(3-4), pages 395-401, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Saeid Mahdavi & Emmanuel Alanis, 2013. "Public expenditures and the unemployment rate in the American states: panel evidence," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(20), pages 2926-2937, July.
    2. Uchechi Shirley Anaduaka & Vivian Ikwuoma Nnetu & Stephen Ekene Aguegboh & David Iheke Okorie, 2016. "Relative Maxima of the Public Sector: A Comparative Study of Nigeria and Ghana," International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, Human Resource Management Academic Research Society, International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, vol. 6(11), pages 575-589, November.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Steady-State Unemployment Rate; Government Size; Error Correction Model; Dynamic Panel Data Model; Arellano-Bond Estimator;

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
    • H19 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Other
    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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