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Convergence in West German Regional Unemployment Rates

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  • Christian Bayer

    (European University Institute, Department of Economics, Florence)

  • Falko Juessen

    (Faculty of Economic & Social Science, University of Dortmund)

Abstract

Differences in regional unemployment rates are often used to describe regional economic inequality. This paper asks whether changes in regional unemployment differences in West Germany are persistent over time. Only if such changes are persistent, the differences are a sensible measure of inequality and only then can policies be effective that aim at lowering the dispersion of unemployment rates. Our analysis follows a time-series approach to economic convergence and we test whether unemployment differences between regions are stationary or not. While univariate tests show that changes in unemployment differences are persistent, more powerful panel tests find them to be only transitory. However, these tests reveal only a moderate speed of convergence. Since there is a structural break following the second oil crisis, we also employ unit-root tests that allow for such break. Again we find strong evidence for convergence and now also the speed of convergence is found to be very high.

Suggested Citation

  • Christian Bayer & Falko Juessen, 2004. "Convergence in West German Regional Unemployment Rates," Urban/Regional 0411007, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpur:0411007
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    Cited by:

    1. Fallahi, Firouz & Voia, Marcel-Cristian, 2015. "Convergence and persistence in per capita energy use among OECD countries: Revisited using confidence intervals," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(PA), pages 246-253.
    2. Roberto Patuelli & Norbert Schanne & Daniel A. Griffith & Peter Nijkamp, 2012. "Persistence Of Regional Unemployment: Application Of A Spatial Filtering Approach To Local Labor Markets In Germany," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 300-323, May.
    3. Gomes, Fábio Augusto Reis & da Silva, Cleomar Gomes, 2009. "Hysteresis versus NAIRU and convergence versus divergence: The behavior of regional unemployment rates in Brazil," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 308-322, May.
    4. Irena Raguž Krištić & Lucija Rogić Dumančić & Vladimir Arčabić, 2017. "Persistence and stochastic convergence of euro area unemployment rates: evidence from LM and RALS-LM unit root tests with breaks," EFZG Working Papers Series 1707, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb.
    5. Peter Huber & Gabriele Tondl, 2012. "Migration and regional convergence in the European Union," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 439-460, November.
    6. Roberta Colavecchio & Declan Curran & Michael Funke, 2009. "Drifting together or falling apart? The empirics of regional economic growth in post-unification Germany," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(9), pages 1087-1098.
    7. Franziska Lottmann, 2012. "Regional Unemployment in Germany: a spatial panel data analysis," ERSA conference papers ersa12p53, European Regional Science Association.
    8. Werner, Daniel, 2014. "New insights into the development of regional unemployment disparities," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100416, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    9. Ronald Bachmann & Michael C. Burda, 2010. "Sectoral Transformation, Turbulence and Labor Market Dynamics in Germany," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 11, pages 37-59, February.
    10. Annekatrin Niebuhr & Nadia Granato & Anette Haas & Silke Hamann, 2012. "Does Labour Mobility Reduce Disparities between Regional Labour Markets in Germany?," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(7), pages 841-858, September.
    11. Mark D. Partridge & Dan S. Rickman & M. Rose Olfert & Ying Tan, 2015. "When Spatial Equilibrium Fails: Is Place-Based Policy Second Best?," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(8), pages 1303-1325, August.
    12. Giovanni Russo & Federico Tedeschi & Aura Reggiani & Peter Nijkamp, 2014. "Commuter Effects on Local Labour Markets: A German Modelling Study," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 51(3), pages 493-508, February.
    13. Joanna Tyrowicz & Piotr Wojcik, 2011. "Nonlinear Stochastic Convergence Analysis of Regional Unemployment Rates in Poland," Review of Economic Analysis, Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis, vol. 3(1), pages 59-79, July.
    14. Bernd Aumann & Rolf Scheufele, 2010. "Is East Germany catching up? A time series perspective," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(2), pages 177-192.
    15. Natalia PRESSMAN & Vadim KLEPFISH, "undated". "Regional Unemployment Rate Convergence in Israel," EcoMod2008 23800110, EcoMod.
    16. Werner, Daniel, 2013. "New insights into the development of regional unemployment disparities," IAB Discussion Paper 201311, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    17. Fábio Augusto Reis Gomes & Cleomar Gomes da Silva, 2006. "Hysteresis Vs. Nairu And Convergence Vs. Divergence: The Behavior Of Regional Unemployment Rates In Brazil," Anais do XXXIV Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 34th Brazilian Economics Meeting] 161, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pós-Graduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
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    20. Roberto Patuelli & Daniel A. Griffith & Michael Tiefelsdorf & Peter Nijkamp, 2009. "Spatial Filtering and Eigenvector Stability: Space-Time Models for German Unemployment Data," Quaderni della facoltà di Scienze economiche dell'Università di Lugano 0902, USI Università della Svizzera italiana.
    21. Ramírez Carrera, Dionisio & Rodríguez, Gabriel, 2009. "Have European Unemployment Rates Converged?," Working Papers 2009-007, Banco Central de Reserva del Perú.
    22. Joanna Tyrowicz & Piotr Wojcik, 2010. "Active Labour Market Policies and Unemployment Convergence in Transition," Review of Economic Analysis, Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis, vol. 2(1), pages 46-72, January.
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    24. Millán Díaz-Foncea & Carmen Marcuello, 2014. "The Relation between Total Employment and Cooperative Employment: A Convergence and Causality Analysis," Spatial Economic Analysis, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(1), pages 71-92, March.

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    Keywords

    stochastic convergence; unemployment; structural break; unit root;

    JEL classification:

    • R - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics

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