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Two-Sided Search, Heterogeneous Skills and Labor Market Performance

  • Danthine, Samuel

    ()

    (University of Québec at Montréal)

A quantitative model of two-sided search with ex-ante heterogeneity in both worker and entrepreneurial skills is proposed. It is possible to characterize both the competitive equilibrium and the optimal solution numerically. The competitive equilibrium is shown to be suboptimal. Less-skilled workers and firms are too selective, not matching with their comparable counterparts. High-types, on the other hand, are not selective enough. The model shows promise as a tool for evaluating the effects of labor policies (and other changes in the economy) on the composition of unemployment and on unemployment duration, as well as on wage distributions. The effect of introducing a simple unemployment insurance scheme is then twofold. First, it increases unemployment by allowing a greater proportion of low types not to match, which decreases output. Second, it decreases mismatch, which has a positive effect on output. It is possible to have a positive effect of unemployment insurance on productivity and find the optimal level of unemployment insurance. Finally, it is shown that assuming risk-neutral workers in this model is not innocuous.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 1572.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1572
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  1. Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner & and John Knowles, 1999. "More on marriage, fertility, and the distribution of income," Working Paper 9904, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  2. Hosios, Arthur J, 1990. "On the Efficiency of Matching and Related Models of Search and Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 279-98, April.
  3. Aiyagari, S.R. & Greenwood, J. & Guner, N., 1999. "On the State of the Union," RCER Working Papers 462, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  4. James Albrecht & Susan Vroman, 2002. "A Matching Model with Endogenous Skill Requirements," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(1), pages 283-305, February.
  5. Shi, Shouyong, 2001. "Frictional Assignment. I. Efficiency," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 232-260, June.
  6. Vroman, Susan B., 1987. "Behavior of the firm in a market for heterogeneous labor," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 313-329, September.
  7. Steven J. Davis, 2001. "The Quality Distribution of Jobs and the Structure of Wages in Search Equilibrium," NBER Working Papers 8434, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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