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The European Unemployment Dilemma

  • Lars Ljungqvist
  • Thomas J. Sargent

Post World War II European welfare states experienced several decades of relatively low unemployment, followed by a plague of persistently high unemployment since the 1980s. We impute the higher unemployment to welfare states' diminished ability to cope with more turbulent economic times, such as the ongoing restructuring from manufacturing to the service industry, adoption of new information technologies and a rapidly changing international economy. We use a general equilibrium search model where workers accumulate skills on the job and lose skills during unemployment.

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Paper provided by European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS) in its series EUI-RSCAS Working Papers with number 36.

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Date of creation: 05 Mar 1996
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Handle: RePEc:erp:euirsc:p0089
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  1. Jackman, Richard & Layard, Richard, 1991. "Does Long-term Unemployment Reduce a Person's Chance of a Job? A Time-Series Test," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 58(229), pages 93-106, February.
  2. Jacobson, Louis S & LaLonde, Robert J & Sullivan, Daniel G, 1993. "Earnings Losses of Displaced Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 685-709, September.
  3. Ljungqvist, Lars & Sargent, Thomas J, 1995. "Welfare States and Unemployment," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 143-60, June.
  4. Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 1994. "The Growth of Earnings Instability in the U.S. Labor Market," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(2), pages 217-272.
  5. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 1991. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198284345, March.
  6. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," NBER Working Papers 1950, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521445337 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Pissarides, Christopher A, 1992. "Loss of Skill during Unemployment and the Persistence of Employment Shocks," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1371-91, November.
  9. Richard G. Harris, 1993. "Globalization, Trade, and Income," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 26(4), pages 755-76, November.
  10. Hall, Robert E, 1982. "The Importance of Lifetime Jobs in the U.S. Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(4), pages 716-24, September.
  11. Bentolila, Samuel & Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Firing Costs and Labour Demand: How Bad Is Eurosclerosis?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 381-402, July.
  12. Ljungqvist, Lars & Sargent, Thomas J., 1995. "The Swedish unemployment experience," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(5), pages 1043-1070, May.
  13. James J. Heckman, 1981. "Heterogeneity and State Dependence," NBER Chapters, in: Studies in Labor Markets, pages 91-140 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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