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Innovations induce asymmetric employment movements

  • Zwick, Thomas

This paper provides a labour supply explanation to the observation that in Germany employment changes are asymmetric during the business cycle. Employment increases are slower, because the reservation wage of workers increases in times of job uncertainty. Workers are afraid in those periods of losing their sunk and necessary human capital investments. They weigh the risks and benefits of investing in human capital with their certain outside option when they decide about staying in the labour market. Human capital investments are sunk and necessary, because firms need new skills while older skills get obsolete at a constant rate. Skill obsolescence is induced by innovations.

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Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 99-24.

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Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:5240
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  1. Hargreaves Heap, S P, 1980. "Choosing the Wrong 'Natural' Rate: Accelerating Inflation or Decelerating Employment and Growth?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(359), pages 611-20, September.
  2. Daron Acemoglu & Jorn-Steffen Pischke, 1998. "Beyond Becker: Training in Imperfect Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 6740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Franz, Wolfgang, 1990. "Hysteresis in economic relationships: An overview," Discussion Papers, Series II 104, University of Konstanz, Collaborative Research Centre (SFB) 178 "Internationalization of the Economy".
  4. Blanchflower, David G, 1991. "Fear, Unemployment and Pay Flexibility," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(406), pages 483-96, May.
  5. William A. Darity & Arthur H. Goldsmith, 1996. "Social Psychology, Unemployment and Macroeconomics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 121-140, Winter.
  6. Franz, Wolfgang, 1990. "Hysteresis in Economic Relationships: An Overview," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 109-25.
  7. Caballero, Ricardo J & Hammour, Mohamad L, 1994. "The Cleansing Effect of Recessions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1350-68, December.
  8. Goldsmith, Arthur H. & Darity, William Jr., 1992. "Social psychology, unemployment exposure and equilibrium unemployment," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 449-471, September.
  9. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," NBER Working Papers 1950, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
  11. Burgess, Simon M, 1992. "Asymmetric Employment Cycles in Britain: Evidence and an Explanation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 102(411), pages 279-90, March.
  12. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:107:y:1992:i:4:p:1371-91 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J, 1986. "Wage Setting, Unemployment, and Insider-Outsider Relations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 235-39, May.
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