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Unemployment in the European Union: A dynamic reappraisal

  • Karanassou, Marika
  • Sala, Héctor
  • Snower, Dennis J.

This paper examines the movements in EU unemployment from two perspectives: (a) the NRU/NAIRU perspective, in which unemployment movements are attributed largely to changes in the long-run equilibrium unemployment rate and (b) the chain-reaction perspective, in which unemployment movements are viewed as the outcome of the interplay between labor market shocks and prolonged lagged adjustment processes. We present an empirical analysis that distinguishes between unemployment movements arising from long-run equilibrium changes and those arising from lagged intertemporal adjustments. This analysis has far-reaching policy implications. Our analysis shows that the rise in EU unemployment over the 1970s and first part of the 1980s was due largely to permanent shocks (especially the rise in working-age population and the decline in capital formation), whereas the unemployment increase in the first part of the 1990s was due largely to temporary shocks (especially the fall in competitiveness and the rise in real interest rates).

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Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW) in its series Open Access Publications from Kiel Institute for the World Economy with number 2933.

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Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifwkie:2933
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  1. Karanassou, Marika & Snower, Dennis J., 1998. "How Labour Market Flexibility Affects Unemployment: Long-Term Implications of the Chain Reaction Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 1826, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173, July.
  3. Marika Karanassou & Dennis J. Snower, 2004. "Unemployment Invariance," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 5(3), pages 297-317, 08.
  4. Badi H. Baltagi & Chihwa Kao, 2000. "Nonstationary Panels, Cointegration in Panels and Dynamic Panels: A Survey," Center for Policy Research Working Papers 16, Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University.
  5. Pesaran, M.H. & Smith, R., 1992. "Estimating Long-Run Relationships From Dynamic Heterogeneous Panels," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9215, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  6. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," NBER Working Papers 1950, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Giuseppe Bertola & Tito Boeri & Giuseppe Nicoletti (ed.), 2001. "Welfare and Employment in a United Europe: A Study for the Fondazione Rdolofo Debenedetti," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262024837, June.
  8. Donald Robertson & James Symons, 1991. "Some Strange Properties of Panel Data Estimators," CEP Discussion Papers dp0044, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  9. Peter C. B. Phillips & Hyungsik R. Moon, 1999. "Linear Regression Limit Theory for Nonstationary Panel Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(5), pages 1057-1112, September.
  10. Karanassou, Marika & Snower, Dennis J., 1996. "Is the Natural Rate a Reference Point?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1507, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Edmund Phelps & Gylfi Zoega, 2001. "Structural booms," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 16(32), pages 83-126, 04.
  12. Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Job security, employment and wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 851-879, June.
  13. Olivier Blanchard & Justin Wolfers, 1999. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Henry, Brian & Karanassou, Marika & Snower, Dennis J, 2000. "Adjustment Dynamics and the Natural Rate: An Account of UK Unemployment," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(1), pages 178-203, January.
  15. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Unemployment, growth and taxation in industrial countries," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 15(30), pages 47-104, 04.
  16. Im, Kyung So & Pesaran, M. Hashem & Shin, Yongcheol, 2003. "Testing for unit roots in heterogeneous panels," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 53-74, July.
  17. Wolfgang HÄRDLE & J. MARRON & L. YANG, 1996. "Discussion," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1996,65, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  18. Kiviet, Jan F., 1995. "On bias, inconsistency, and efficiency of various estimators in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 53-78, July.
  19. Pesaran, H. & Smith, R. & Im, K.S., 1995. "Dynamic Linear Models for Heterogeneous Panels," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9503, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  20. Bentolila, S. & Saint-Paul, G., 1995. "A model of labour demand with linear adjustment costs," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 105-105, March.
  21. Harris, Richard D. F. & Tzavalis, Elias, 1999. "Inference for unit roots in dynamic panels where the time dimension is fixed," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 201-226, August.
  22. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J., 1987. "Union activity, unemployment persistence and wage-employment ratchets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(1-2), pages 157-167.
  23. Maddala, G S & Wu, Shaowen, 1999. " A Comparative Study of Unit Root Tests with Panel Data and a New Simple Test," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(0), pages 631-52, Special I.
  24. Baltagi, Badi H. & Griffin, James M., 1997. "Pooled estimators vs. their heterogeneous counterparts in the context of dynamic demand for gasoline," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 303-327, April.
  25. Banerjee, Anindya, 1999. " Panel Data Unit Roots and Cointegration: An Overview," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(0), pages 607-29, Special I.
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