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Municipal Labor Demand in the Presence of Uncertainty: An Econometric Approach

  • Douglas Holtz-Eakin
  • Harvey S. Rosen

We specify a modem of municipal labor demand when resource flows available to the municipality are not known with certainty. The model allows us to test the hypothesis that employment decisions are rational in the sense that they incorporate all available information at the time that the decisions are made. We find that for our sample of communities, on the whole one cannot reject the hypothesis that labor demand is consistent with intertemporal utility maximization under uncertainty. However, small and large communities exhibit different behavior. The employment decisions of small communities are consistent with the model, while those of large communities are not.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3516.

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Date of creation: Oct 1991
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Publication status: published as Journal of Labor Economics, Vol. 9, No. 3, pp. 276-293, (July 1991).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3516
Note: PE
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  1. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  2. James M. Poterba & Julio J. Rotemberg, 1988. "Inflation And Taxation With Optimizing Governments," NBER Working Papers 2567, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Feenberg, D.R. & Gentry, W. & Gilroy, D. & Rosen, H.S., 1988. "Testing The Rationality Of State Revenue Forecasts," Papers 16, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Discussion Paper.
  4. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & Schwarz, Joshua L., 1987. "Public-sector labor markets," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 22, pages 1219-1260 Elsevier.
  5. Stephen Zeldes, . "Consumption and Liquidity Constraints: An Empirical Investigation," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 24-85, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  6. Sargent, Thomas J, 1978. "Estimation of Dynamic Labor Demand Schedules under Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 1009-44, December.
  7. Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1987. "The optimal collection of seigniorage : Theory and evidence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 327-341, September.
  8. Joseph Tracy, 1988. "Comparisons Between Public and Private Sector Union Wage Differentials: Does the Legal Environment Matter?," NBER Working Papers 2755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas & Newey, Whitney & Rosen, Harvey S, 1988. "Estimating Vector Autoregressions with Panel Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(6), pages 1371-95, November.
  10. Joseph Gyourko & Joseph Tracy, 1989. "Public Sector Bargaining and the Local Budgetary Process," NBER Working Papers 2915, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Topel, Robert H, 1982. "Inventories, Layoffs, and the Short-Run Demand for Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(4), pages 769-87, September.
  12. Hulten, Charles R, 1984. "Productivity Change in State and Local Governments," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 66(2), pages 256-66, May.
  13. Richard B. Freeman, 1985. "How do Public Sector Wages and Employment Respond to Economic Conditions," NBER Working Papers 1653, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Hall, Robert E, 1978. "Stochastic Implications of the Life Cycle-Permanent Income Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 971-87, December.
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