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Wage Dispersion and Labor Turnover with Adverse Selection

  • Leo Kaas

    (University of Konstanz)

  • Carlos Carrillo-Tudela

    (University of Essex)

This paper analyzes the effects of adverse selection on worker turnover, wage dispersion, and resource allocation in labor markets. We consider a model of on-the-job search where firms offer long-term wage contracts to workers of different ability. Firms do not observe worker ability upon hiring but learn it gradually over time. Provided that information frictions are sufficiently strong, low-wage firms offer screening contracts and hire all types of workers in equilibrium, whereas high-wage firms specialize in attracting high-ability workers only. This implies that low-ability workers have higher turnover rates, earn lower wages on average and face an earnings distribution with a higher frictional component. Furthermore, positive sorting obtains in equilibrium.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2011 Meeting Papers with number 1075.

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Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:red:sed011:1075
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Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA

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  1. Shimer, R. & Smith, L., 1997. "Assortative Matching and Search," Working papers 97-2a, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Andreas Hornstein & Per Krusell & Giovanni L. Violante, 2011. "Frictional Wage Dispersion in Search Models: A Quantitative Assessment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(7), pages 2873-98, December.
  3. Rasmus Lentz & Dale T. Mortensen, 2005. "An Empirical Model of Growth Through Product Innovation," NBER Working Papers 11546, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Carlos Carrillo-Tudela, 2009. "An Equilibrium Search Model When Firms Observe Workers' Employment Status," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(2), pages 485-506, 05.
  5. Walter Y. Oi & Todd L. Idson, 1999. "Workers Are More Productive in Large Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 104-108, May.
  6. Adriana D. Kugler & Gilles Saint-Paul, 2004. "How Do Firing Costs Affect Worker Flows in a World with Adverse Selection?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(3), pages 553-584, July.
  7. Margaret Stevens, 2004. "Wage-Tenure Contracts in a Frictional Labour Market: Firms' Strategies for Recruitment and Retention," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(2), pages 535-551.
  8. Julia I. Lane & John C. Haltiwanger & James Spletzer, 1999. "Productivity Differences across Employers: The Roles of Employer Size, Age, and Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 94-98, May.
  9. Michelacci, Claudio & Suarez, Javier, 2002. "Incomplete Wage Posting," CEPR Discussion Papers 3658, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Kenneth Burdett & Carlos Carrillo‐Tudela & Melvyn G. Coles, 2011. "Human Capital Accumulation And Labor Market Equilibrium," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 52(3), pages 657-677, 08.
  11. Lentz, Rasmus, 2010. "Sorting by search intensity," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(4), pages 1436-1452, July.
  12. Veronica Guerrieri & Robert Shimer & Randall Wright, 2010. "Adverse Selection in Competitive Search Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(6), pages 1823-1862, November.
  13. Williams, Nicolas, 2009. "Seniority, experience, and wages in the UK," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 272-283, June.
  14. Iourii Manovskii & Gueorgui Kambourov, 2004. "Occupational Specificity of Human Capital," 2004 Meeting Papers 197, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  15. Camera, Gabriele & Delacroix, Alain, 2003. "Trade Mechanism Selection in Markets with Frictions," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1166, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
  16. Montgomery, James D, 1999. "Adverse Selection and Employment Cycles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(2), pages 281-97, April.
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