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The time trend in the matching function

  • Poeschel, Friedrich

    (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany])

"We revisit the puzzling finding that labour market performance appears to deteriorate, as suggested by negative time trends in empirical matching functions. We investigate whether these trends simply arise from omitted variable bias. Concretely, we consider the omission of job seekers beyond the unemployed, the omission of inflows as opposed to stocks, and the failure to account for vacancy dynamics. We first build a model of all labour market flows and use it to construct series for these flows from aggregate data on the U.S. labour market. Using these series, we obtain a measure for employed and non-participating job seekers. When we thus include all job seekers, the estimated time trend remains unchanged. We similarly obtain measures for inflows into unemployment and vacancies. When these are included, the magnitude of the time trend is halved but remains significant. When we account for basic vacancy dynamics, the estimated time trend can be fully explained by omitted variable bias. As suggested by this result, we present evidence that empirical matching functions can be interpreted as versions of the law of motion for vacancies: the coefficients in matching functions coincide with the coefficients in the law of motion after correcting for omitted variable bias." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))

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Paper provided by Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany] in its series IAB Discussion Paper with number 201203.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: 29 Feb 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iab:iabdpa:201203
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  1. Jackman, R & Layard, Richard & Pissarides, C, 1989. "On Vacancies," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 51(4), pages 377-94, November.
  2. van Ours, J.C. & Lindeboom, M. & Renes, G., 1994. "Matching Employers and Workers : an Empirical Analysis on the Effectiveness of Search," Other publications TiSEM 3ada67c1-145c-42d0-8726-f, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  3. Margaret Stevens, 2007. "New Microfoundations For The Aggregate Matching Function," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(3), pages 847-868, 08.
  4. Karen Mumford & Peter N. Smith, . "The Hiring Function Reconsidered: On Closing The Circle," Discussion Papers 96/45, Department of Economics, University of York.
  5. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-153334 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Melvyn Coles & Barbara Petrongolo, 2008. "A Test Between Stock-Flow Matching And The Random Matching Function Approach," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 49(4), pages 1113-1141, November.
  7. Gregg, Paul & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2005. "Stock-flow matching and the performance of the labor market," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(8), pages 1987-2011, November.
  8. Shigeru Fujita & Garey Ramey, 2006. "The cyclicality of job loss and hiring," Working Papers 06-17, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  9. Hoyt Bleakley & Jeffrey C. Fuhrer, 1997. "Shifts in the Beveridge Curve, job matching, and labor market dynamics," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Sep, pages 3-19.
  10. Lindeboom, M. & Ours, J.C. & Renes, G., 1991. "Matching employers and workers : an empirical analysis on the effectiveness of search," Serie Research Memoranda 0063, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
  11. Patricia M. Anderson & Simon M. Burgess, 2000. "Empirical Matching Functions: Estimation and Interpretation Using State-Level Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(1), pages 93-102, February.
  12. Abowd, John M & Zellner, Arnold, 1985. "Estimating Gross Labor-Force Flows," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 3(3), pages 254-83, June.
  13. Petrongolo, Barbara & Pissarides, Christopher, 2000. "Looking Into The Black Box: A Survey Of The Matching Function," CEPR Discussion Papers 2409, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Bruce Fallick & Charles A. Fleischman, 2004. "Employer-to-employer flows in the U.S. labor market: the complete picture of gross worker flows," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-34, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  15. Kuhn, Peter J. & Mansour, Hani, 2011. "Is Internet Job Search Still Ineffective?," IZA Discussion Papers 5955, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Stephen Nickell & Luca Nunziata & Wolfgang Ochel, 2005. "Unemployment in the OECD Since the 1960s. What Do We Know?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 1-27, 01.
  17. Robert Shimer, 2012. "Reassessing the Ins and Outs of Unemployment," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 15(2), pages 127-148, April.
  18. Burdett, Kenneth & Coles, Melvyn G & van Ours, Jan C, 1994. "Temporal Aggregation Bias in Stock-Flow Models," CEPR Discussion Papers 967, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-142172 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Poterba, James M & Summers, Lawrence H, 1986. "Reporting Errors and Labor Market Dynamics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(6), pages 1319-38, November.
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