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Unemployment and Liquidity Constraints

  • Vassilis A. Hajivassiliou
  • Yannis M. Ioannides


In this paper we propose a modelling approach for labor supply and consumption decisions that is firmly grounded within a utility maximizing framework and allows for a role of such institutional constraints as limited access to borrowing and involuntary unemployment. We report estimates for a system of dynamic probit models with data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. These estimations test broad predictions of the theoretical model. One of our models describes a household's propensity to be liquidity constrained in a given period. The second is a dynamic ordered probit model for a labor constraint indicator describing qualitative aspects of the conditions of employment, that is whether the household head is involuntarily overemployed, voluntarily employed, or involuntarily underemployed or unemployed. These models are estimated separately as well as jointly. Our results provide strong support for the basic theory of constrained behavior and the interaction liquidity constraints and exogenous constraints on labor supply.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Tufts University in its series Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University with number 9925.

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Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tuf:tuftec:9925
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  7. Lee, Lung-Fei & Porter, Robert H, 1984. "Switching Regression Models with Imperfect Sample Separation Information-With an Application on Cartel Stability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 391-418, March.
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  14. Vassilis A. Hajivassiliou & Axel Borsch-Supan, 1990. "Smooth Unbiased Multivariate Probability Simulators for Maximum Likelihood Estimation of Limited Dependent Variable Models," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 960, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  15. Marjorie Flavin, 1985. "Excess Sensitivity of Consumption to Current Income: Liquidity Constraints or Myopia?," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 18(1), pages 117-36, February.
  16. Chamberlain, Gary, 1984. "Panel data," Handbook of Econometrics, in: Z. Griliches† & M. D. Intriligator (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 22, pages 1247-1318 Elsevier.
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  22. Stephen Zeldes, . "Consumption and Liquidity Constraints: An Empirical Investigation," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 24-85, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
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  25. Stephen Zeldes, . "Optimal Consumption with Stochastic Income: Deviations from Certainty Equivalence," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 20-86, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
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  31. Hajivassiliou, Vassilis A. & Ioannides, Yannis M., 1996. "Duality and liquidity constraints under uncertainty," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(6-7), pages 1177-1192.
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