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Labour Market Reforms and Current Account Imbalances: Beggar-thy-neighbour policies in a currency union?

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  • Baas, Timo
  • Belke, Ansgar

Abstract

Member countries of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) initiated wide-ranging labour market reforms in the last decade. This process is ongoing as countries that are faced with serious labour market imbalances perceive reforms as the fastest way to restore competitiveness within a currency union. This fosters fears among observers about a beggar-thy-neighbour policy that leaves non-reforming countries with a loss in competitiveness and an increase in foreign debt. Using a two-country, two-sector search and matching DSGE model, we analyse the impact of labour market reforms on the transmission of macroeconomic shocks in both non-reforming and reforming countries. By analysing the impact of reforms on foreign debt, we contribute to the debate on whether labour market reforms increase or reduce current account imbalances.

Suggested Citation

  • Baas, Timo & Belke, Ansgar, 2014. "Labour Market Reforms and Current Account Imbalances: Beggar-thy-neighbour policies in a currency union?," CEPS Papers 9621, Centre for European Policy Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:eps:cepswp:9621
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    Cited by:

    1. Baas, Timo & Belke, Ansgar, 2017. "Oil price shocks, monetary policy and current account imbalances within a currency union," CEPS Papers 13334, Centre for European Policy Studies.

    More about this item

    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
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • F32 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements

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