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Job flows in Swedish manufacturing 1972-1996

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    This paper deals with the heterogeneous employment outcome at the plant level in Swedish manufacturing over the period 1972-96. Non-negligible gross flows of jobs is found to be a pronounced feature in Swedish manufacturing, but as compared to results on U.S. data, the average pace of job reallocation has not been as high. However, masked behind low averages are periods of large-scale job reallocation and, in particular, we find that job reallocation exhibits a countercyclical movement. Little of the observed heterogeneity in the plant-level employment outcome can be explained by easily observable characteristics of the plant. Instead most job reallocation takes place within narrowly defined sectors of the manufacturing sector. Furthermore, the role for idiosyncrasies in explaining the plant-level employment outcome becomes increasingly important in times of contraction. We find no evidence supporting the hypothesis that large wage compression explains high job reallocation rates. Investigating the covariance structure of job reallocation, we instead find that, beside the net employment growth, the growth in productivity is the single most influential factor. These findings, we like to believe, are consistent with theoretical models, which stress that the process of growth and technology adoption involves a great deal of experimentation. Accordingly, we find that these reallocative activities have been important in accounting for the long-run growth in productivity.

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    File URL: http://www.ifau.se/upload/pdf/se/to2000/wp99-4.pdf
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    Paper provided by IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy in its series Working Paper Series with number 1999:4.

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    Length: 49 pages
    Date of creation: 12 Oct 1999
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:1999_004
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    1. Burda, Michael & Wyplosz, Charles, 1994. "Gross worker and job flows in Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(6), pages 1287-1315, June.
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    3. Agell, J. & Lundborg, P., 1992. "Theories of Pay and Unemployment: Survey Evidence from Swedish Manufacturing Firms," Papers 1993-8, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
    4. Richard Ericson & Ariel Pakes, 1992. "An Alternative Theory of Firm and Industry Dynamics," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1041, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
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    6. Boeri, Tito, 1996. "Is Job Turnover Countercyclical?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(4), pages 603-25, October.
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    8. Lucia Foster & John C. Haltiwanger & C. J. Krizan, 2001. "Aggregate Productivity Growth. Lessons from Microeconomic Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: New Developments in Productivity Analysis, pages 303-372 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Burgess, Simon & Lane, Julia & Stevens, David, 1995. "Job Flows, Worker Flows and Churning," CEPR Discussion Papers 1125, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. Abraham, Katharine G & Katz, Lawrence F, 1986. "Cyclical Unemployment: Sectoral Shifts or Aggregate Disturbances?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 507-22, June.
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    16. Caballero, Ricardo J & Engel, Eduardo M R A, 1993. "Microeconomic Adjustment Hazards and Aggregate Dynamics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(2), pages 359-83, May.
    17. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, June.
    18. Olivier Jean Blanchard & Peter Diamond, 1992. "The Flow Approach to Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 4000, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Mortensen, Dale T & Pissarides, Christopher A, 1994. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in the Theory of Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 397-415, July.
    20. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1979. "Firm-specific Capital and Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1246-60, December.
    21. Dunne, T. & Roberts, M.J. & Samuelson L., 1988. "Plant Turnover And Gross Employment Flows In The U.S. Manufacturing Sector," Papers 9-87-7, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
    22. Jonathan S. Leonard, 1986. "In the Wrong Place at the Wrong Time: The Extent of Frictional and Structural Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 1979, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    23. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1982. "Selection and the Evolution of Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(3), pages 649-70, May.
    24. Hopenhayn, Hugo A, 1992. "Entry, Exit, and Firm Dynamics in Long Run Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(5), pages 1127-50, September.
    25. Hopenhayn, Hugo & Rogerson, Richard, 1993. "Job Turnover and Policy Evaluation: A General Equilibrium Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(5), pages 915-38, October.
    26. Walter Y. Oi, 1962. "Labor as a Quasi-Fixed Factor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 538.
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