This Selected Issues paper and Statistical Appendix constructs an index of human capital for the Spanish labor force over 1977–97, and projects it over the next decade on the basis of likely demographic developments. The methodology by which the index is constructed considers both educational attainments resulting from formal schooling and improvements in workers’ productivity resulting from experience, or “learning by doing.” The results suggest that the gains from increases in formal schooling can be large, although they are translated into higher economic growth only gradually.
This paper deals with liberalization and the evolution of output during the transition from plan to market. It explains why strong liberalization leads to a comparatively steep fall in output early in the transition, but a relatively strong recovery later on. Because it takes time to restructure the capital stock inherited from the old system, liberalization initially leads to transitional unemployment of capital and the contraction of the old enterprise sector. By making room quickly for the new, more efficient enterprises, however, liberalization also sets the stage for recovery and a much higher level of income in the medium term. [JEL E23, P21, P27, P52]
This paper proposes and solves a search model in which job separation requires mandatory notice. When jobs are subject to idiosyncratic uncertainty, firms would issue advance notice even with good business conditions. We show that such precautionary policy is not pursued if it entails sufficiently high productivity losses. If workers can search on the job, an increase in advance notice increases job to job movements, reduces unemployment flows, and has ambiguous effects on unemployment. Results are consistent with the fact that North American and European labor markets, despite their differences in job security provisions, experience similar turnover rates and dissimilar unemployment flows.
This paper studies net employment growth across 21 OECD economies in 1980-97, focusing on experiences within the European Union. It finds that sectoral effects can only partially account for differences in job creation. By contrast, it shows that a policy package including low taxation and flexible employment protection legislation is associated with high job creation and can account for most of the observed differences. The Netherlands’ success is largely accounted for by the creation of part-time jobs for women aged 25-49 in the services sector, but in most EU countries the substitution of part-time jobs for full-time jobs is considerable.
Ms. Andrea De Michelis, Mr. Marcello M. Estevão, and Ms. Beth Anne Wilson
Traditionally, shocks to total factor productivity (TFP) are considered exogenous and the employment response depends on their effect on aggregate demand. We raise the possibility that in response to labor supply shocks firms adjust efficiency, rendering TFP endogenous to firms’ production decisions. We present robust cross-country evidence of a strong negative correlation between growth in TFP and labor inputs over the medium to long run. In addition, when using instruments to capture changes in hours worked that are independent of TFP shocks, we find that cross-country increases in labor input cause reductions in TFP growth. These results have important policy implications, including that low productivity growth in some countries may partly be a side effect of strong labor market performance. By the same token, countries facing a declining workforce, say, because of aging, may see accelerating TFP as firms find better ways of employing workers.
This compilation of summaries of Working Papers released during July-December 1993 is being issued as a part of the Working Paper series. It is designed to provide the reader with an overview of the research work performed by the staff during the period. Authors of Working Papers are normally staff members of the Fund or consultants, although on occasion outside authors may collaborate with a staff member in writing a paper. The views expressed in the Working Papers or their summaries are, however, those of the authors and should not necessarily be interpreted as representing the views of the Fund. Copies of individual Working Papers and information on subscriptions to the annual series of Working Papers may be obtained from IMF Publication Services, International Monetary Fund, 700 19th Street N.W., Washington, D.C. 20431. Telephone: (202) 623-7430 Telefax: (202) 623-7201
Over the past decade, the United States has been very successful atcreating jobs. Some other industrial countries have clearly lagged behind. But what is the reason why some countries are more successful than others at creating employment? Are there common factors that explainjob creation? This paper presents the findings of a new IMF study that has systematically analyzed job creation over the past two decades in theindustrial countries, focusing particularly on differences within Europe.