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Shocks and rigidities as determinants of CEE labor markets' performance. A panel SVECM approach


  • Bukowski, Maciej
  • Koloch, Grzegorz
  • Lewandowski, Piotr


In this paper the dynamic responses of labor markets to macroeconomic shocks in eight CEE countries are empirically analyzed in panel SVECM. Identification of shocks, interpreted as real wage, productivity, labor demand and supply shocks, is based on DSGE model with labor market explicitly modeled after Mortensen and Pissarides (1994). Fluctuations in foreign demand are controlled for and the model is estimated with panel procedure, which improves estimation's precision. We show that propagation of shocks on NMS labor markets fairly resembles that characterizing OECD countries. Productivity improving shocks temporarily increase unemployment. Positive labor demand shocks increase employment, depress unemployment, rise real average wages, and were found to be the main determinant of variability of employment and unemployment in the short-run. In the medium term, in Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland innovations in wages seem to be prevalent drivers of employment and unemployment. The retrospective simulations of the model show that Baltic states and Poland were significantly affected by the collapse of Russian exports in late 1990s, and in 2000 an adverse labor demand shock hit all NMS, except for Hungary and Slovenia. However, the flexibility of wages is found to be crucial factor behind the diverse labor market performance in the region. Slovenia and Estonia fared best when it comes to flexibility of wages on macro level, on the other hand in Czech Republic, Lithuania and Poland downward wage rigidities were especially binding after employment-contracting shocks.

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  • Bukowski, Maciej & Koloch, Grzegorz & Lewandowski, Piotr, 2008. "Shocks and rigidities as determinants of CEE labor markets' performance. A panel SVECM approach," MPRA Paper 12429, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:12429

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Breitung, Jörg & Pesaran, Mohammad Hashem, 2005. "Unit roots and cointegration in panels," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2005,42, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    2. Jacobson, Tor & Vredin, Anders & Warne, Anders, 1998. "Are Real Wages and Unemployment Related?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(257), pages 69-96, February.
    3. Blanchard, Olivier & Wolfers, Justin, 2000. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages 1-33, March.
    4. M. Hashem Pesaran, 2007. "A simple panel unit root test in the presence of cross-section dependence," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 265-312.
    5. Saikkonen, Pentti & Luukkonen, Ritva, 1997. "Testing cointegration in infinite order vector autoregressive processes," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 93-126, November.
    6. Andrea Bassanini & Romain Duval, 2006. "Employment Patterns in OECD Countries: Reassessing the Role of Policies and Institutions," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 35, OECD Publishing.
    7. Bean, Charles R, 1994. "European Unemployment: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(2), pages 573-619, June.
    8. Olivier Blanchard, 2006. "European unemployment: the evolution of facts and ideas," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 21(45), pages 5-59, January.
    9. David H. Papell & Christian J. Murray & Hala Ghiblawi, 2000. "The Structure of Unemployment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(2), pages 309-315, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marek Antosiewicz & Piotr Lewandowski, 2014. "What if you were German? - DSGE approach to the Great Recession on labour markets," IBS Working Papers 1/2014, Instytut Badan Strukturalnych, revised Dec 2014.

    More about this item


    Unemployment; Rigidities; Transition economies; Cointegration; Structural VECM; Panel econometrics; DSGE models;

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General

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