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Dynamic Labor Reallocation with Heterogeneous Skills and Uninsured Idiosyncratic Risk

Author

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  • Ester Faia
  • Marianna Kudlyak
  • Ekaterina Shabalina

Abstract

Occupational specificity of human capital motivates an important role of occupational reallocation for the economy’s response to shocks and for the dynamics of inequality. We introduce occupational mobility, through a random choice model with dynamic value function optimization, into a multi-sector/multi-occupation Bewley (1980)- Aiyagari (1994) model with heterogeneous income risk, liquid and illiquid assets, price adjustment costs, and in which households differ by their occupation-specific skills. Labor income is a combination of endogenous occupational wages and idiosyncratic shock. Occupational reallocation and its impact on the economy depend on the transferability of workers’ skills across occupations and occupational specialization of the production function. The model matches well the statistics on income and wealth inequality, and the patterns of occupational mobility. It provides a laboratory for studying the short- and long-run effects of occupational shocks, automation and task encroaching on income and wealth inequality. We apply the model to the pandemic recession by adding an SIR block with occupation-specific infection risk and a ZLB policy and study the impact of occupational and aggregate labor supply shocks. We find that occupational mobility may tame the effect of the shocks but amplifies earnings inequality, as compared to a model without mobility.

Suggested Citation

  • Ester Faia & Marianna Kudlyak & Ekaterina Shabalina, 2021. "Dynamic Labor Reallocation with Heterogeneous Skills and Uninsured Idiosyncratic Risk," Working Paper Series 2021-16, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfwp:92842
    DOI: 10.24148/wp2021-16
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bill Dupor & Marios Karabarbounis & Marianna Kudlyak & M. Saif Mehkari, 2018. "Regional Consumption Responses and the Aggregate Fiscal Multiplier," Working Paper Series 2018-4, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    2. Yongsung Chang & Sun-Bin Kim, 2006. "From Individual To Aggregate Labor Supply: A Quantitative Analysis Based On A Heterogeneous Agent Macroeconomy ," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(1), pages 1-27, February.
    3. Böhm, Michael Johannes & Gaudecker, Hans-Martin von & Schran, Felix, 2019. "Occupation Growth, Skill Prices, and Wage Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 12647, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    4. Krueger, Dirk & Uhlig, Harald & Xie, Taojun, 2020. "Macroeconomic Dynamics and Reallocation in an Epidemic: Evaluating the "Swedish Solution''," CEPR Discussion Papers 14607, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Veronica Guerrieri & Guido Lorenzoni & Ludwig Straub & Iván Werning, 2020. "Macroeconomic Implications of COVID-19: Can Negative Supply Shocks Cause Demand Shortages?," NBER Working Papers 26918, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Boskin, Michael J, 1974. "A Conditional Logit Model of Occupational Choice," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages 389-398, Part I, M.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Occupational Mobility; Heterogeneous Agents; Skills; Income and Wealth Inequality; Discrete Choice Optimization;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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