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Improving Labour Market Performance in France

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  • Stéphanie Jamet

Abstract

With high unemployment, low participation of specific groups such as the low-skilled and those nearing retirement age, and relatively low average hours worked, France is far from using its full labour potential. Improving the labour market situation would not only increase living standards and growth potential but also reduce social exclusion and ease pressures on public spending. This paper analyses various characteristics of the French labour market that may explain the low utilisation of labour potential. It puts forward the need for a comprehensive reform of the labour market aiming at: i) shifting the burden of social protection in the labour market away from employers towards the state by reducing and streamlining employment protection legislation; ii) removing incentives that lead to early withdrawal from the labour market; iii) allowing employers and employees more freedom to negotiate working hours; and iv) improving efficiency in job placement services.

Suggested Citation

  • Stéphanie Jamet, 2006. "Improving Labour Market Performance in France," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 504, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:504-en
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/877354041783
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alfonso Arpaia & Giuseppe Carone, 2004. "Do labour taxes (and their composition) affect wages in the short and in the long run?," Public Economics 0411004, EconWPA.
    2. Isabelle Joumard, 2003. "Tax systems in European Union countries," OECD Economic Studies, OECD Publishing, vol. 2002(1), pages 91-151.
    3. Kwang-Yeol Yoo, 2003. "Corporate Taxation of Foreign Direct Investment Income 1991-2001," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 365, OECD Publishing.
    4. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Unemployment, growth and taxation in industrial countries," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 15(30), pages 47-104, April.
    5. Katrin Millock & Céline Nauges & Thomas Sterner, 2004. "Environmental Taxes: A Comparison of French and Swedish Experience from Taxes on Industrial Air Pollution," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 2(1), pages 30-34, 04.
    6. Calmfors, L. & Nymoen, R., 1990. "Real Wage Adjustment And Employment Policies In The Nordic Countries," Papers 461, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
    7. Laurent Flochel & Thierry Madies, 2002. "Interjurisdictional Tax Competition in a Federal System of Overlapping Revenue Maximizing Governments," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 9(2), pages 121-141, March.
    8. Alfonso Arpaia & Giuseppe Carone, 2004. "Do labour taxes (and their composition) affect wages in the short and the long run? - Alfonso Arpaia and Giuseppe Carone," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 216, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    9. Ann Vourc'h & Patrick Lenain, 2001. "Comment encourager une croissance écologiquement durable en France ?," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 314, OECD Publishing.
    10. Willi Leibfritz & John Thornton & Alexandra Bibbee, 1997. "Taxation and Economic Performance," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 176, OECD Publishing.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    employment protection legislation; France; inactivity traps; labour costs; minimum wage; public employment services; wage bargaining; working time reduction;

    JEL classification:

    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General
    • J50 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - General
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings
    • J8 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards
    • K31 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Labor Law

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