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Sebastian Weber

21 April 2010
This paper investigates the importance of labour market institutions for inflation and unemployment dynamics. Using the New Keynesian framework we argue that labour market institutions should be divided into those institutions that cause Unemployment Rigidities (UR) and those that cause Real Wage Rigidities (RWR). The two types of institutions have opposite effects and their interaction is crucial for the dynamics of inflation and unemployment. We estimate a panel VAR with deterministically varying coefficients and find that there is a profound difference in the responses of unemployment and inflation to shocks under different constellations of the labor market.
JEL Code
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
Wage dynamics network
20 May 2010
The notable increase in international reserve holdings over the past decade and their use during the global financial crisis of 2008/2009 has sparked renewed interest in the analysis of the optimal level of reserve holdings, in particular in countries which are subject to sudden stops. Less attention has been given to the optimal composition of reserves and even less to the joint determination of level and composition. In light of current developments, we show that despite the common belief that higher reserve levels should go along with higher diversification to minimize the opportunity costs from holding reserves, the opposite may even be true. It depends on the factors that stand behind the increase in reserves whether increased diversification is optimal or not. We estimate for a panel of 20 countries the determinants of the currency composition of reserves and show how it is affected by the different motives of reserve accumulation. In line with the recent literature on reserve levels we find that reserve accumulation is primarily driven by precautionary motives, which in turn underpins the allocation of reserves to safe assets. While we find primarily evidence of the allocation being a function of precautionary motives, we also find some weak evidence for reserve accumulation to lead to more diversified portfolios if reserve accumulation is driven by other factors than precautionary motives.
JEL Code
F31 : International Economics→International Finance→Foreign Exchange
F33 : International Economics→International Finance→International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
E42 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Monetary Systems, Standards, Regimes, Government and the Monetary System, Payment Systems
G11 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→Portfolio Choice, Investment Decisions
21 October 2016
This study focuses on the employment effect of a hiring subsidy available to firms with less than 50 employees, granted in the context of the 2012 Spanish labour market reform. Exploiting the arbitrary firm size threshold using regression discontinuity design, estimates show on average 2 percentage points higher employment growth for firms that became eligible for the scheme. However, tests and complementary regressions suggest that the higher employment growth for smaller firms in 2013 is driven by a 2010 reform, which imposes more stringent reporting requirements on larger firms. Accounting for this using difference-in-discontinuity regressions, we fail to find any significant effect of the subsidy on increasing employment of eligible firms. While our study suggests several pitfalls arising from size-contingent regulations, more data are needed to test for benecial long-term effects from the hiring subsidy in addressing duality of the Spanish labour market.
JEL Code
C21 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Single Equation Models, Single Variables→Cross-Sectional Models, Spatial Models, Treatment Effect Models, Quantile Regressions
D22 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
H25 : Public Economics→Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue→Business Taxes and Subsidies