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Labor Supply, Informal Economy and Russian Transition

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  • Maxim Bouev

Abstract

The literature on economics of transition has suggested a number of scenarios to explain unemployment and labour reallocation in Eastern Europe. However, it has recently been argued that these so-called Optimal Speed of Transition (OST) studies do not account for many stylized facts concerning transitional labour markets (such as a drop in participation rates, job-to-job shifts of workers, development of an informal labour market, etc.). The transformation in Russia has witnessed an increase in moonlighting opportunities for workers and a rapid growth of the informal sector. To allow for this fact, which has a strong structural and qualitative effect on Russian transition, I attempt to incorporate secondary job holding in the OST framework. I first consider a time-allocation model in the spirit of Gronau (1977), which takes account of institutional peculiarities of the Russian state sector allowing workers to moonlight in the informal market. I introduce the motivational factor describing a heterogeneous worker's propensity to informal activity. The time-allocation model leads into an OST-type dynamic model with on-the-job search, labour shifts underground and state sector hirings. Numerical simulations of the model help look at Russian transition from a new angle and explain several stylized facts.

Suggested Citation

  • Maxim Bouev, 2001. "Labor Supply, Informal Economy and Russian Transition," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 408, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  • Handle: RePEc:wdi:papers:2000-408
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Natalia V. Smirnova, 2003. "Re-employment Probabilities and Wage Offer Function for Russian Labor Market," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 547, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. Maxim Bouev, 2004. "Diverging Paths: Transition in the Presence of the Informal Sector," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2004-689, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    time allocation; moonlighting; informal economy; job reallocation; structural change; speed of transition; earnings inequalities; Russia;

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • P20 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - General

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