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Understanding the gains from wage flexibility: The exchange rate connection

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    We study the gains from increased wage flexibility and their dependence on exchange rate policy, using a small open economy model with staggered price and wage setting. Two results stand out: (i) the impact of wage adjustments on employment is smaller the more the central bank seeks to stabilize the exchange rate, and (ii) an increase in wage flexibility often reduces welfare, and more likely so in economies under an exchange rate peg or an exchange rate-focused monetary policy. Our findings call into question the common view that wage flexibility is particularly desirable in a currency union.

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    File URL: http://www.econ.upf.edu/docs/papers/downloads/1408.pdf
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    Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 1408.

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    Date of creation: Dec 2013
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    Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:1408
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/

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    1. Tommaso Monacelli, 1999. "Into the Mussa Puzzle: Monetary Policy Regimes and the Real Exchange Rate in a Small Open Economy," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 437, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 15 Sep 2000.
    2. Saroj Bhattarai & Gauti Eggertsson & Raphael Schoenle, 2012. "Is increased price flexibility stabilizing? Redux," Staff Reports 540, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    3. Jesper Linde, 2012. "Fiscal Consolidation in an Open Economy," 2012 Meeting Papers 1087, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Erceg, Christopher J. & Henderson, Dale W. & Levin, Andrew T., 2000. "Optimal monetary policy with staggered wage and price contracts," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 281-313, October.
    5. Mongelli, Francesco Paolo, 2002. ""New" views on the optimum currency area theory: what is EMU telling us?," Working Paper Series 0138, European Central Bank.
    6. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2001. "Solving Dynamic General Equilibrium Models Using a Second-Order Approximation to the Policy Function," CEPR Discussion Papers 2963, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Blanchard, Olivier J & Galí, Jordi, 2008. "Labour Markets and Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Model with Unemployment," CEPR Discussion Papers 6765, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    8. Alessandro Barattieri & Susanto Basu & Peter Gottschalk, 2010. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Wages," NBER Working Papers 16130, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Bianca De Paoli, 2004. "Monetary Policy and Welfare in a Small Open Economy," CEP Discussion Papers dp0639, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    10. Eggertsson, Gauti & Ferrero, Andrea & Raffo, Andrea, 2014. "Can structural reforms help Europe?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 2-22.
    11. Robert Shimer, 2005. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 25-49, March.
    12. Jordi Gal� & Tommaso Monacelli, 2005. "Monetary Policy and Exchange Rate Volatility in a Small Open Economy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(3), pages 707-734.
    13. Martin Uribe & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe, 2012. "Pegs and Pain," 2012 Meeting Papers 303, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    14. Emi Nakamura & Jón Steinsson, 2008. "Five Facts about Prices: A Reevaluation of Menu Cost Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1415-1464, November.
    15. Robert E. Hall, 2005. "Employment Fluctuations with Equilibrium Wage Stickiness," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 50-65, March.
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