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The Surprising Symmetry of Gross Job Flows

  • Christopher L. Foote

A large literature attempts to explain the asymmetric behavior of job destruction and job creation over the business cycle. This paper contends that much of this asymmetry is spurious. Analyzing gross flows in relation to the net flow virtually eliminates cyclical asymmetry in annual data and substantially reduces it in quarterly data. To the extent that gross flows are symmetric, there is a fundamental identification problem in moving between gross flows and the net flow that is reminiscent of the earlier empirical literature on sectoral shifts.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w6226.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6226.

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Date of creation: Oct 1997
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6226
Note: LS ME
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  1. Boeri, Tito, 1996. "Is Job Turnover Countercyclical?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(4), pages 603-25, October.
  2. Katharine G. Abraham & Lawrence F. Katz, 1984. "Cyclical Unemployment: Sectoral Shifts or Aggregate Disturbances?," NBER Working Papers 1410, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Caballero, Ricardo J & Hammour, Mohamad L, 1994. "The Cleansing Effect of Recessions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1350-68, December.
  4. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, June.
  5. Christopher L. Foote, 1998. "Trend Employment Growth and the Bunching of Job Creation and Destruction," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1818, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  6. Mortensen, Dale T & Pissarides, Christopher A, 1994. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in the Theory of Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 397-415, July.
  7. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1994. "On the Timing and Efficiency of Creative Destruction," NBER Working Papers 4768, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Jonathan S. Leonard, 1986. "In the Wrong Place at the Wrong Time: The Extent of Frictional and Structural Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 1979, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Lilien, David M, 1982. "Sectoral Shifts and Cyclical Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(4), pages 777-93, August.
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