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Fixed-term contracts and the duration distribution of unemployment

  • Maia Güell

In the mid-1980s, many European countries introduced fixed-term contracts. Since then their labor markets have become more dynamic. This paper studies the implications of such reforms for the duration distribution of unemployment, with particular emphasis on the changes in the duration dependence. I estimate a parametric duration model using cross-sectional data drawn from the Spanish Labor Force Survey from 1980 to 1994 to analyze the chances of leaving unemployment before and after the introduction of fixed-term contracts. I find that duration dependence has increased since such reform. Semi-parametric estimation of the model also shows that for long spells, the probability of leaving unemployment has decreased since such reform.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 602.

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Date of creation: Feb 2002
Date of revision: May 2003
Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:602
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/

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  1. Blanchard, O.J. & Diamond, P., 1990. "Ranking, Unemployment Duration, And Wages," Working papers 546, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Maia Güell, 2003. "Fixed-term Contracts and Unemployment: an Efficiency Wage Analysis," Working Papers 18, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  3. Gerard J, Van den Berg & Bas Van der Klmaauw, 1998. "Combining Micro and Macro Unemployment Duration Data," Working Papers 98-58, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  4. Garcia Serrano, Carlos, 1999. "Worker Turnover and Job Reallocation: The Role of Fixed-Term Contracts," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 51(1), pages 237a, January.
  5. Stephen Machin & Alan Manning, 1998. "The Causes and Consequences of Long-Term Unemployment in Europe," CEP Discussion Papers dp0400, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  6. Arellano, Manuel & Bentolila, Samuel & Bover, Olympia, 1998. "Unemployment Duration, Benefit Duration and the Business Cycle," CEPR Discussion Papers 1840, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173, March.
  8. Nickell, Stephen J, 1979. "Estimating the Probability of Leaving Unemployment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(5), pages 1249-66, September.
  9. Nickell, S J, 1979. "The Effect of Unemployment and Related Benefits on the Duration of Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 89(353), pages 34-49, March.
  10. Victor Aguirregabiria & Cesar Alonso-Borrego, 2009. "Labor contracts and flexibility : evidence from a labor market reform in Spain," Economics Working Papers we091811, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  11. Wadsworth, J., 1989. "Unemployment Benefits And Search Effort In The Uk Labour Market," Papers 333, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
  12. Atkinson, Anthony B & Micklewright, John, 1991. "Unemployment Compensation and Labor Market Transitions: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(4), pages 1679-1727, December.
  13. Dale T. Mortensen, 1977. "Unemployment insurance and job search decisions," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(4), pages 505-517, July.
  14. Alfonso Alba-Ramirez, 1999. "Explaining the transitions out of unemployment in Spain: the effect of unemployment insurance," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(2), pages 183-193.
  15. Jenkins, Stephen P. & Garcia-Serrano, Carlos, 2000. "Re-employment probabilities for Spanish men: what role does the unemployment benefit system play?," ISER Working Paper Series 2000-17, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  16. Maia Güell & Barbara Petrongolo, 2000. "Workers Transitions from Temporary to Permanent Employment: the Spanish Case," CEP Discussion Papers dp0438, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  17. Schmitt, John & Wadsworth, Jonathan, 1993. "Unemployment Benefit Levels and Search Activity," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 55(1), pages 1-24, February.
  18. Mortensen, Dale T, 1970. "Job Search, the Duration of Unemployment, and the Phillips Curve," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(5), pages 847-62, December.
  19. Alison L Booth & Juan J. Dolado & Jeff Frank, 2002. "Symposium On Temporary Work Introduction," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(480), pages F181-F188, June.
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