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Optimal Labor-Market Policy in Recessions

  • Jung, Philip
  • Kuester, Keith

We examine the optimal labor market-policy mix over the business cycle. In a search and matching model with risk-averse workers, endogenous hiring and separation, and unobservable search effort we first show how to decentralize the constrained-efficient allocation. This can be achieved by a combination of a production tax and three labor-market policy instruments, namely, a vacancy subsidy, a layoff tax and unemployment benefits. We derive analytical expressions for the optimal setting of each of these for the steady state and for the business cycle. Our propositions suggest that hiring subsidies, layoff taxes and the replacement rate of unemployment insurance should all rise in recessions. We find this confirmed in a calibration targeted to the U.S. economy.

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Paper provided by University of Mannheim, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 11-1.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:mnh:wpaper:29630
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  1. Haefke, Christian & Sonntag, Marcus & van Rens, Thijs, 2009. "Wage rigidity and job creation," Kiel Working Papers 1504, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  2. Ch. Pissarides., 2011. "The Unemployment Volatility Puzzle: Is Wage Stickiness the Answer?," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 1.
  3. Hagedorn, Marcus & Manovskii, Iourii, 2008. "The cyclical behavior of equilibrium unemployment and vacancies revisited," Working Paper Series 0853, European Central Bank.
  4. Camille Landais & Pascal Michaillat & Emmanuel Saez, 2010. "A Macroeconomic Theory of Optimal Unemployment Insurance," NBER Working Papers 16526, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Camille Landais & Pascal Michaillat & Emmanuel Saez, 2013. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance over the Business Cycle," Discussion Papers 1303, Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM).
  6. Marcelo Veracierto, 2004. "Firing Costs and Business Cycle Fluctuations," 2004 Meeting Papers 445c, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  7. Cahuc, Pierre & Zylberberg, Andre, 2005. "Optimum Income Taxation and Layoff Taxes," CEPR Discussion Papers 5170, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Silva, José Ignacio & Toledo, Manuel, 2009. "Labor Turnover Costs And The Cyclical Behavior Of Vacancies And Unemployment," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(S1), pages 76-96, May.
  9. Kurt Mitman & Stanislav Rabinovich, 2011. "Pro-Cyclical Unemployment Benefits? Optimal Policy in an Equilibrium Business Cycle Model," PIER Working Paper Archive 11-010, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  10. Blanchard, Olivier & Tirole, Jean, 2006. "The Joint Design of Unemployment Insurance and Employment Protection: A First Pass," IDEI Working Papers 258, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  11. Barnichon, Regis, 2010. "Building a composite Help-Wanted Index," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 109(3), pages 175-178, December.
  12. David Domeij, 2005. "Optimal Capital Taxation and Labor Market Search," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(3), pages 623-650, July.
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  1. Optimal Labor-Market Policy in Recessions (AEJ:MA 2015) in ReplicationWiki

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