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Labor Market, Financial Crises and Inflation: Jobless and Wageless Recoveries


  • Guillermo A. Calvo
  • Fabrizio Coricelli
  • Pablo Ottonello


This paper uses a sample of 116 recession episodes in developed and emerging market economies to compare the labor-market recovery during financial crises with that of other recession episodes. It documents two new stylized facts. First, labor-market recovery from financial crises is characterized by either higher unemployment ("jobless recovery") or a lower real wage ("wageless recovery"). Second, inflation determines the type of recovery: low inflation (below 30 percent annual rate) is associated with jobless recovery, while high inflation is associated with wageless recovery. The paper shows that this pattern of labor recovery from financial crises is consistent with a simple model in which collateral requirements are higher (lower) when a larger share of labor costs (physical capital expenditure) is involved in a loan contract.

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  • Guillermo A. Calvo & Fabrizio Coricelli & Pablo Ottonello, 2012. "Labor Market, Financial Crises and Inflation: Jobless and Wageless Recoveries," NBER Working Papers 18480, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18480
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Pablo Ottonello, 2015. "Capital Unemployment, Financial Shocks, and Investment Slumps," 2015 Meeting Papers 1153, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    2. Fidrmuc, Jarko & Klein, Caroline & Price, Robert & Wörgötter, Andreas, 2013. "Slovakia: A Catching Up Euro Area Member In and Out of the Crisis," IZA Policy Papers 55, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Betz, Frank & Ravasan, Farshad R., 2016. "Collateral regimes and missing job creation in the MENA region," EIB Working Papers 2016/03, European Investment Bank (EIB).
    4. Vakulenko, E. & Gurvich, E., 2016. "Real Wage Flexibility in Russia: Comparative Analysis," Journal of the New Economic Association, New Economic Association, vol. 31(3), pages 67-92.
    5. Korinek, Anton & Kreamer, Jonathan, 2014. "The redistributive effects of financial deregulation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(S), pages 55-67.
    6. Jarko Fidrmuc & Andreas Wörgötter, 2013. "Slovakia: The Consequences of Joining the Euro Aea before the Crisis for a Small Catching-up Economy," CESifo Forum, Ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 14(1), pages 57-63, May.
    7. Teimouri, Sheida & Zietz, Joachim, 2017. "Economic costs of alternative monetary policy responses to speculative currency attacks," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 73(PB), pages 419-434.
    8. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohé & Martín Uribe, 2017. "Liquidity Traps and Jobless Recoveries," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(1), pages 165-204, January.
    9. Guillermo A. Calvo, 2012. "The Price Theory of Money, Prospero's Liquidity Trap, and Sudden Stop: Back to Basics and Back," NBER Working Papers 18285, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohé & Martín Uribe, 2012. "The Making Of A Great Contraction With A Liquidity Trap and A Jobless Recovery," NBER Working Papers 18544, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Guillermo A. Calvo, 2013. "The Mayekawa Lecture: Puzzling over the Anatomy of Crises- Liquidity and the Veil of Finance," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 31, pages 39-64, November.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • F3 - International Economics - - International Finance
    • F32 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements

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