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Reducing working hours: a general equilibrium analysis

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  • Terry J. Fitzgerald

Abstract

An examination of the effects of restricting the weekly hours of workers in a heterogeneous-agent, general-equilibrium framework. The main findings are that restricting weekly hours increases employment substantially, but may also lead to large declines in wages, productivity, output, and consumption, and can increase the wage disparity between skilled and unskilled workers.

Suggested Citation

  • Terry J. Fitzgerald, 1998. "Reducing working hours: a general equilibrium analysis," Working Paper 9801, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedcwp:9801
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hansen, Gary D., 1985. "Indivisible labor and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 309-327, November.
    2. Terry J. Fitzgerald, 1998. "Work Schedules, Wages and Employment in a General Equilibrium Model with Team Production," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(4), pages 809-834, October.
    3. Hart, Robert A., 1984. "Worksharing and factor prices," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 165-188, March.
    4. Prescott, Edward C & Townsend, Robert M, 1984. "General Competitive Analysis in an Economy with Private Information," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(1), pages 1-20, February.
    5. Terry J. Fitzgerald, 1996. "Reducing working hours: American workers' salvation?," Economic Commentary, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Sep.
    6. Rogerson, Richard, 1988. "Indivisible labor, lotteries and equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 3-16, January.
    7. Hoel, Michael & Vale, Bent, 1986. "Effects on unemployment of reduced working time in an economy where firms set wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 1097-1104, October.
    8. Juster, F Thomas & Stafford, Frank P, 1991. "The Allocation of Time: Empirical Findings, Behavioral Models, and Problems of Measurement," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(2), pages 471-522, June.
    9. FitzRoy, Felix R & Hart, Robert A, 1985. "Hours, Layoffs and Unemployment Insurance Funding: Theory and Practice in an International Perspective," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 95(379), pages 700-713, September.
    10. Calmfors, Lars & Hoel, Michael, 1989. "Work Sharing, Employment and Shiftwork," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(4), pages 758-773, October.
    11. Per Krusell & Lee E. Ohanian & JosÈ-Victor RÌos-Rull & Giovanni L. Violante, 2000. "Capital-Skill Complementarity and Inequality: A Macroeconomic Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1029-1054, September.
    12. Calmfors, Lars & Hoel, Michael, 1988. " Work Sharing and Overtime," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 90(1), pages 45-62.
    13. M. S. Feldstein, 1967. "Specification of the Labour Input in the Aggregate Production Function," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(4), pages 375-386.
    14. Terry J. Fitzgerald, 1996. "Reducing working hours," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q IV, pages 13-22.
    15. Andreas Hornstein & Edward C. Prescott, 1989. "The firm and the plant in general equilibrium theory," Staff Report 126, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    16. Hoel, Michael, 1986. "Employment and Allocation Effects of Reducing the Length of the Workday," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 53(29), pages 75-85, February.
    17. Booth, Alison & Schiantarelli, Fabio, 1987. "The Employment Effects of a Shorter Working Week," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 54(214), pages 237-248, May.
    18. Yoram Barzel, 1973. "The Determination of Daily Hours and Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 87(2), pages 220-238.
    19. Calmfors, Lars, 1985. "Work sharing, employment and wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 293-309.
    20. Walter Y. Oi, 1962. "Labor as a Quasi-Fixed Factor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 538-538.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Antonio García Sánchez & María del Mar Vázquez Méndez, 2005. "The timing of work in a general equilibrium model with shiftwork," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 29(1), pages 149-179, January.
    2. Marimon, Ramon & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2000. "Employment and distributional effects of restricting working time," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(7), pages 1291-1326, June.
    3. Victoria Osuna & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull, 2003. "Implementing the 35 Hour Workweek by Means of Overtime Taxation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(1), pages 179-206, January.
    4. Felix R. FitzRoy & Michael Funke & Michael A. Nolan, 2001. "Taxation, Unemployment and Working Time in Models of Economic Growth," Discussion Paper Series, Department of Economics 200112, Department of Economics, University of St. Andrews.

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