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The Macroeconomics of the Labor Market: Three Fundamental Views

  • Marika Karanassou
  • Hector Sala
  • Dennis Snower

We distinguish and assess three fundamental views of the labor market regarding the movements in unemployment: (i) the frictionless equilibrium view; (ii) the chain reaction theory, or prolonged adjustment view; and (iii) the hysteresis view. While the frictionless view implies a clear compartmentalization between the short- and long-run, the hysteresis view implies that all the short-run ‡uctuations automatically turn into long-run changes in the unemployment rate. We assert the problems faced by these conceptions in explaining the diversity of labor market experiences across the OECD labor markets. We argue that the prolonged adjustment view can overcome these problems since it implies that the short, medium, and long runs are interrelated, merging with one another along an intertemporal continuum.

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Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Kiel Working Papers with number 1378.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kie:kieliw:1378
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  22. Karanassou, Marika & Snower, Dennis J., 1997. "Is the natural rate a reference point?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-5), pages 559-569, April.
  23. Marika Karanassou & Hector Sala & Dennis J. Snower, 2008. "Phillips Curves and Unemployment Dynamics: A Critique and a Holistic Perspective," Discussion Papers 2008-08, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.
  24. Berndt, Ernst R. & Fuss, Melvyn A., 1986. "Productivity measurement with adjustments for variations in capacity utilization and other forms of temporary equilibrium," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1-2), pages 7-29.
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