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The Impact of Tax, Product and Labour Market Distortions on the Phillips Curve and the Natural Rate of Unemployment

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  • Bokan, Nikola
  • Hughes Hallett, Andrew

Abstract

Most people accept that structural and labour market reforms are needed in Europe. However few have been undertaken. The usual conjecture is that reforms are costly in economic performance and costly to finance. Blanchard and Giavazzi (2003) and Spector (2004) develop a general equilibrium model with imperfect competition to show the impact of labour or product market deregulation. We extend that model to combine both reforms, and include the costs of financing them, the conflict between long run gains and short run costs, and to allow for reforms of distortionary taxation. We also extend the model to explain the natural rate of unemployment and non-wage employment costs, to show the impact of reform on the short and long run Phillips curve parameters. We find that structural reforms imply short run costs but long run gains (unemployment rises and then falls, while wages move in the opposite way); that the long run gains outweigh the short run costs; and that the financing of such reforms is the main stumbling block. We also find that the implications for welfare improvements and employment generation are quite different: tax reforms are more effective for welfare, but market liberalisation for employment.

Suggested Citation

  • Bokan, Nikola & Hughes Hallett, Andrew, 2007. "The Impact of Tax, Product and Labour Market Distortions on the Phillips Curve and the Natural Rate of Unemployment," Economics Discussion Papers 2007-42, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifwedp:6169
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Harris Dellas & George Tavlas, 2005. "Wage Rigidity and Monetary Union," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(506), pages 907-927, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Andrew Hughes Hallett, 2008. "Sustainable fiscal policies and budgetary risk under alternative monetary policy arrangements," Economic Change and Restructuring, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 1-28, March.
    2. Andrew Hughes Hallett, 2008. "Coordination without Explicit Cooperation: Monetary-Fiscal Interactions in an Era of Demographic Change," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 305, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Structural reform; wage bargains; short vs. long run substitutability; endogenous entry of firms;

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
    • J58 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Public Policy

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