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Hiring and Firing Costs, Adverse Selection and Long-term Unemployment

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  • Kugler, Adriana

    (Georgetown University)

  • Saint-Paul, Gilles

    (Paris School of Economics)

Abstract

In this paper, we present a matching model with adverse selection that explains why flows into and out of unemployment are much lower in Europe compared to North America, while employment-to-employment flows are similar in the two continents. In the model, firms use discretion in terms of whom to fire and, thus, low quality workers are more likely to be dismissed than high quality workers. Moreover, as hiring and firing costs increase, firms find it more costly to hire a bad worker and, thus, they prefer to hire out of the pool of employed job seekers rather than out of the pool of the unemployed, who are more likely to turn out to be `lemons’. We use microdata for Spain and the U.S. and find that the ratio of the job finding probability of the unemployed to the job finding probability of employed job seekers was smaller in Spain than in the U.S.. Furthermore, using U.S. data, we find that the discrimination of the unemployed increased over the 1980’s in those states that raised firing costs by introducing exceptions to the employment-at-will doctrine.

Suggested Citation

  • Kugler, Adriana & Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2000. "Hiring and Firing Costs, Adverse Selection and Long-term Unemployment," IZA Discussion Papers 134, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp134
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Yu‐Fu Chen & Dennis Snower & Gylfi Zoega, 2003. "Labour‐market Institutions and Macroeconomic Shocks," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 17(2), pages 247-270, June.
    2. Schwarze, Johannes, 2000. "Using Panel Data on Income Satisfaction to Estimate the Equivalence Scale Elasticity," IZA Discussion Papers 224, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Marco Guerrazzi, 2020. "Wage and employment determination in a dynamic insider–outsider model," Evolutionary and Institutional Economics Review, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 1-23, January.
    4. Andrea Ichino & Regina T. Riphahn, 2001. "The Effect of Employment Protection on Worker Effort. A Comparison of Absenteeism During and After Probation," CESifo Working Paper Series 596, CESifo.
    5. Boeri, Tito & Jimeno, Juan F., 2005. "The effects of employment protection: Learning from variable enforcement," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(8), pages 2057-2077, November.
    6. Canziani, Patrizia & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2001. "Firing costs and stigma: A theoretical analysis and evidence from microdata," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(10), pages 1877-1906, December.
    7. Dennis Wesselbaum, 2014. "Firing tax vs severance payments – an unequal comparison," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 41(5), pages 721-736, September.
    8. Chen Liang & Yili Hong & Bin Gu, 2017. "Home Bias in Global Employment," Working Papers 17-06, NET Institute.
    9. Agell, Jonas & Bennmarker, Helge, 2002. "Wage Policy and Endogenous Wage Rigidity: A Representative View from the Inside," Research Papers in Economics 2002:12, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
    10. Grund, Christian, 2000. "Wages as Risk Compensation in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 221, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    11. Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2009. "Firing costs in a New Keynesian model with endogenous separations," Kiel Working Papers 1550, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW Kiel).
    12. Ahrens, Steffen & Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2009. "On the introduction of firing costs," Kiel Working Papers 1559, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW Kiel).
    13. Burgess, Simon & Turon, Hélène, 2010. "Worker flows, job flows and unemployment in a matching model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 393-408, April.
    14. Eugeniusz Kwiatkowski & Przemysław Włodarczyk, 2012. "Wpływ prawnej ochrony zatrudnienia na rynek pracy w warunkach negatywnego szoku ekonomicznego," Gospodarka Narodowa. The Polish Journal of Economics, Warsaw School of Economics, issue 11-12, pages 1-23.
    15. Andrea De Michelis, 2004. "Sand in the wheels of the labor market: the effect of firing costs on employment," International Finance Discussion Papers 796, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    16. Leonor Modesto, 2008. "Unions, Firing Costs, and Unemployment," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 22(3), pages 509-546, September.
    17. Andrea Bassanini & Ekkehard Ernst, 2002. "Labour market regulation, industrial relations and technological regimes: a tale of comparative advantage," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(3), pages 391-426, June.
    18. Tito Boeri & Jan van Ours, 2013. "The Economics of Imperfect Labor Markets: Second Edition," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 10142.
    19. Eugeniusz Kwiatkowski & Przemysław Włodarczyk, 2017. "Employment Protection Legislation and Its Impact on the Elasticity of Employment in OECD Countries," Gospodarka Narodowa. The Polish Journal of Economics, Warsaw School of Economics, issue 3, pages 29-53.
    20. Pekka Ilmakunnas & Mika Maliranta, 2004. "Hiring from unemployment and separation to unemployment," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(2), pages 91-95.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    matching models; worker flows; unemployment; turnover costs; Adverse selection; discrimination;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing

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