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Business cycles and compositional variation in U.S. unemployment

Author

Listed:
  • Abbring, Jaap H.

    (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Faculteit der Economische Wetenschappen en Econometrie (Free University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics Sciences, Business Administration and Economitrics)

  • Berg, Gerard J. van den
  • Ours, Jan C. van

Abstract

In the past decades several features of U.S. unemployment dynamics have been investigated empirically. The original focus of research was on the duration of unemployment. In later studies the cyclicality of incidence and duration, compositional effects and duration dependence of the exit rate out of unemployment have been investigated. Unlike the partial approach of previous studies this paper takes all elements of unemployment dynamics simultaneously into account. We find that cyclical fluctuations in unemployment are driven by variations in the incidence, individual exit probabilities and the composition of the inflow into unemployment. We also find negative duration dependence of the unemployment exit rate which can be attributed to employers ranking workers according to the length of their unemployment spell.

Suggested Citation

  • Abbring, Jaap H. & Berg, Gerard J. van den & Ours, Jan C. van, 1997. "Business cycles and compositional variation in U.S. unemployment," Serie Research Memoranda 0020, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
  • Handle: RePEc:vua:wpaper:1997-20
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    File URL: http://degree.ubvu.vu.nl/repec/vua/wpaper/pdf/19970020.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Abbring, Jaap H & van den Berg, Gerard J & van Ours, Jan C, 2001. "Business Cycles and Compositional Variation in U.S. Unemployment," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(4), pages 436-448, October.
    2. van den Berg, Gerard J & van Ours, Jan C, 1996. "Unemployment Dynamics and Duration Dependence," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 100-125, January.
    3. Blanchard, Olivier Jean, 1991. "Wage Bargaining and Unemployment Persistence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 23(3), pages 277-292, August.
    4. Akerlof, George A & Main, Brian G M, 1980. "Unemployment Spells and Unemployment Experience," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 885-893, December.
    5. Berg, G.J. & Ours, J.C., 1993. "Unemployment dynamics and duration dependence in France, the Netherlands and the UK," Serie Research Memoranda 0038, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
    6. Olivier Jean Blanchard & Peter Diamond, 1994. "Ranking, Unemployment Duration, and Wages," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(3), pages 417-434.
    7. Devine, Theresa J. & Kiefer, Nicolas M., 1991. "Empirical Labor Economics: The Search Approach," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195059366.
    8. Baker, Michael, 1992. "Digit preference in CPS unemployment data," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 117-121, May.
    9. van den Berg, Gerard J & van Ours, Jan C, 1994. "Unemployment Dynamics and Duration Dependence in France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(423), pages 432-443, March.
    10. Darby, Michael R & Haltiwanger, John C & Plant, Mark W, 1985. "Unemployment Rate Dynamics and Persistent Unemployment under Rational Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 614-637, September.
    11. Akerlof, George A & Main, Brian G M, 1981. "An Experience-Weighted Measure of Employment and Unemployment Durations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 1003-1011, December.
    12. Abowd, John M & Zellner, Arnold, 1985. "Estimating Gross Labor-Force Flows," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 3(3), pages 254-283, June.
    13. Baker, Michael, 1992. "Unemployment Duration: Compositional Effects and Cyclical Variability," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 313-321, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Burgess, Simon & Turon, Hélène, 2000. "Unemployment Dynamics, Duration and Equilibrium: Evidence from Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers 2490, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    unemployment composition; unemployment duration; business cycle; sorting; ranking;

    JEL classification:

    • C41 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Duration Analysis; Optimal Timing Strategies
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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