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Financing Constraints and Fixed-term Employment Contracts: Evidence from the 2008-2009 Financial Crisis



This paper investigates the effects of financing constraints on employment decisions of firms, when it is possible to choose between permanent and fixed-term workers. We use linked employer-employee data for the universe of private sector firms in Portugal, and the 2008-09 financial crisis as a shock for identification. We find that firms in sectors that intrinsically rely more on external finance increased the share of fixed-term employment and hires after the crisis, while the effect for firms with wider access to buyer-supplier credit is relatively lower. At the worker level, workers in sectors that require significant external financing are more likely to be hired with a fixed-term contract after the crisis, while those in sectors that have wider access to supplier credit are less likely. Our results suggest that the crisis induced financially constrained firms to use the more flexible fixed-term contracts more intensively. Credit from suppliers alleviated this effect by potentially providing an alternative source of funds to credit from financial institutions.

Suggested Citation

  • Ana P. Fernandes & Priscila Ferreira, 2015. "Financing Constraints and Fixed-term Employment Contracts: Evidence from the 2008-2009 Financial Crisis," NIMA Working Papers 58, Núcleo de Investigação em Microeconomia Aplicada (NIMA), Universidade do Minho.
  • Handle: RePEc:nim:nimawp:58/2015
    DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2016.12.009

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1994. "Monetary Policy, Business Cycles, and the Behavior of Small Manufacturing Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 309-340.
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    3. Bentolila, Samuel & Jansen, Marcel & Jiménez, Gabriel & Ruano, Sonia, 2013. "When Credit Dries Up: Job Losses in the Great Recession," CEPR Discussion Papers 9776, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    5. Juan J Dolado & Carlos Garcia--Serrano & Juan F. Jimeno, 2002. "Drawing Lessons From The Boom Of Temporary Jobs In Spain," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(721), pages 270-295, June.
    6. José Varejão & Pedro Portugal, 2003. "Why do Firms Use Fixed-Term Contracts?," Working Papers w200308, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    7. Chor, Davin & Manova, Kalina, 2012. "Off the cliff and back? Credit conditions and international trade during the global financial crisis," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 117-133.
    8. Michael Greenstone & Alexandre Mas & Hoai-Luu Nguyen, 2014. "Do Credit Market Shocks affect the Real Economy? Quasi-Experimental Evidence from the Great Recession and ‘Normal’ Economic Times," NBER Working Papers 20704, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    12. Siemer, Michael, 2014. "Firm Entry and Employment Dynamics in the Great Recession," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2014-56, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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    More about this item


    Financial crisis; Credit constraints; Employment; Fixed-term Contracts;

    JEL classification:

    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
    • G20 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - General
    • M51 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions

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