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How much has labour taxation contributed to European structural unemployment?

  • Christophe Planas
  • Werner Roeger
  • Alessandro Rossi

This paper analyses the effect of labour taxes on Euro area unemployment. Empirical estimates obtained so far can be criticised as being spurious because the regressions generally lack non-measurable variables constituting the reservation wage that can possibly be non stationary. Here we overcome this problem by using an unobserved component model. For the Euro area unemployment, we find a significant tax effect that is in the middle of the estimates that can be found in the empirical literature. This study gives support to the view that lowering labour taxes can help to reduce unemployment in continental Europe.

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File URL: http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/publications/publication912_en.pdf
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Paper provided by Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission in its series European Economy - Economic Papers with number 183.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:euf:ecopap:0183
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  1. Beyer, A. & Doornik, J.A. & Hendry, D.F., 2000. "Constructing Historical Euro-Zone Data," Economics Working Papers eco2000/10, European University Institute.
  2. Robert J. Gordon, 1997. "The Time-Varying NAIRU and Its Implications for Economic Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(1), pages 11-32, Winter.
  3. Durbin, James & Koopman, Siem Jan, 2001. "Time Series Analysis by State Space Methods," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198523543, March.
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  7. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, . "Unemployment, Growth and Taxation in Industrial Countries," Working Papers 122, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  8. Lawrence F. Katz & Olivier Blanchard, 1999. "Wage Dynamics: Reconciling Theory and Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 69-74, May.
  9. Olivier Blanchard & Justin Wolfers, 1999. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1996. "How Precise are Estimates of the Natural Rate of Unemployment?," NBER Working Papers 5477, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Gerlach, Stefan & Smets, Frank, 1999. "Output gaps and monetary policy in the EMU area1," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 801-812, April.
  12. Michael Artis & Massimiliano Marcellino & Tommaso Proietti, 2004. "Dating Business Cycles: A Methodological Contribution with an Application to the Euro Area," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 66(4), pages 537-565, 09.
  13. Mikael Apel & Per Jansson, 1999. "System estimates of potential output and the NAIRU," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 373-388.
  14. Enrique G. Mendoza & Assaf Razin & Linda L. Tesar, 1994. "Effective Tax Rates in Macroeconomics: Cross-Country Estimates of Tax Rates on Factor Incomes and Consumption," NBER Working Papers 4864, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Llaudes, Ricardo, 2005. "The Phillips curve and long-term unemployment," Working Paper Series 0441, European Central Bank.
  16. Pete Richardson & Laurence Boone & Claude Giorno & Mara Meacci & David Rae & David Turner, 2000. "The Concept, Policy Use and Measurement of Structural Unemployment: Estimating a Time Varying NAIRU Across 21 OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 250, OECD Publishing.
  17. Francesco Daveri, 2002. "Labor Taxes and Unemployment: a Survey of the Aggregate Evidence," CeRP Working Papers 18, Center for Research on Pensions and Welfare Policies, Turin (Italy).
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