Skip to main content

Unemployment and Hours of Work, Cross Country Differences

  • Reference work entry
  • First Online:
The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics
  • 67 Accesses

Abstract

Since the 1960s labour market outcomes among the world’s richest economies have changed dramatically, especially in terms of unemployment rates and time devoted to market work. This article summarizes the evidence regarding these changes and discusses some of the explanations that have been proposed for why these labour market outcomes have evolved so differently across economies.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this chapter

Chapter
USD 29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
eBook
USD 6,499.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Hardcover Book
USD 8,499.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Institutional subscriptions

Similar content being viewed by others

Bibliography

  • Alesina, A., E. Glaeser, and B. Sacerdote. 2005. Work and leisure in the US and Europe: Why so different? In NBER macroeconomics annual, vol. 20, ed. M. Gertler and K. Rogoff. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Alvarez, F., and M. Veracierto. 1999. Labor market policies in an equilibrium search model. In NBER macroeconomics annual, vol. 14, ed. B.S. Bernanke and J.J. Rotemberg. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bentolila, S., and G. Bertola. 1990. Firing costs and labor demand: How bad is eurosclerosis? Review of Economic Studies 57: 381–402.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Bertola, G., and A. Ichino. 1995. Wage inequality and unemployment: United States vs. Europe. In NBER Macroeconomics annual, vol. 10, ed. B.S. Bernanke and J.J. Rotemberg. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bertrand, M., and F. Kramarz. 2002. Does entry regulation hinder job creation? Evidence from the French retail industry. Quarterly Journal of Economics 117: 1369–1413.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Blanchard, O. 2005. The economic future of Europe. Journal of Economic Perspectives 18(4): 3–26.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Blanchard, O., and F. Giavazzi. 2002. Macroeconomic effects of regulation and deregulation in goods and labor markets. Quarterly Journal of Economics 117: 879–907.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Blanchard, O., and J. Wolfers. 2000. The role of shocks and institutions in the rise of European unemployment: The aggregate evidence. Economic Journal 110: 1–33.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Card, D., F. Kramarz, and T. Lemieux. 1999. Changes in relative structure of wages and employment: A comparison of the United States, Canada and France. Canadian Journal of Economics 32: 843–877.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Chang, Y., and S. Kim. 2006. From individual to aggregate labor supply: A quantitative analysis based on a heterogeneous agent macroeconomy. International Economic Review 47: 1–27.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Daveri, F., and G. Tabellini. 2000. Unemployment, growth and taxation in industrial countries. Economic Policy 15: 47–104.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Davis, S., and M. Henrekson. 2005. Tax effects on work activity, industry mix and shadow economy size: Evidence from rich country comparisons. In Labour supply and incentives to work in Europe, ed. R. Goméz-Salvador, A. Lamo, B. Petrongolo, M. Ward, and E. Wasmer. Northampton: Edward Elgar.

    Google Scholar 

  • Freeman, R., and R. Schettkat. 2001. Marketization of production and the US–Europe employment gap. Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics 63: 647–670.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Freeman, R., and R. Schettkat. 2005. Marketization of household production and the EU–US gap in work. Economic Policy 20: 6–50.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Hamermesh, D., M. Burda, and P. Weil. 2007. The distribution of total work in the EU and the US. In Are Europeans lazy or Americans crazy? ed. T. Boeri. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hopenhayn, H., and R. Rogerson. 1993. Job turnover and policy evaluation: A general equilibrium analysis. Journal of Political Economy 101: 915–938.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Hornstein, A., P. Krusell, and G. Violante. 2007. Technology–policy interactions in frictional labor markets. Review of Economic Studies 74: 1089–1124.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Krugman, P. 1994. Past and prospective causes of high unemployment. Economic Review of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City 79(4th quarter): 23–43.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ljungqvist, L., and T. Sargent. 1998. The European unemployment dilemma. Journal of Political Economy 106: 514–550.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Ljungqvist, L., and T. Sargent. 2007. Do taxes explain European unemployment? Indivisible labor, human capital, lotteries and savings. Working paper, New York University.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marimon, R., and F. Zilibotti. 1999. Unemployment versus mismatch of talents: Reconsidering unemployment benefits. Economic Journal 109: 266–291.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Messina, J. 2006. The role of product market regulations in the process of structural change. European Economic Review 50: 1863–1890.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Mortensen, D., and C. Pissarides. 1999. Unemployment responses to skill-biased technology shocks. Economic Journal 109: 242–265.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Nickell, S., L. Nunziata, and W. Ochel. 2006. Unemployment in the OECD since the 1960s. What do we know? Economic Journal 115: 1–27.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Ohanian, L., A. Raffo, and R. Rogerson. 2006. Long-term changes in labor supply and taxes: Evidence from OECD countries, 1956–2004. Working paper no. 12786. Cambridge, MA: NBER.

    Google Scholar 

  • Olovsson, C. 2004. Why do Europeans work so little? Mimeo: Stockholm School of Economics.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pissarides, C. 2007. Unemployment and hours of work: The North Atlantic divide revisited. International Economic Review 48: 1–36.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Prescott, E. 2004. Why do Americans work so much more than Europeans? Quarterly Review of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis 28(1): 2–13.

    Google Scholar 

  • Prescott, E. 2006. The transformation of macroeconomic policy and research, 2004 Nobel Prize address. Journal of Political Economy 114: 203–236.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Pries, M., and R. Rogerson. 2005. Hiring policies, labor market institutions and labor market flows. Journal of Political Economy 113: 811–839.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Ragan, K. 2005. Taxes, transfers and time use: Fiscal policy in a household production model. Mimeo, University of Chicago.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rogerson, R. 2006. Understanding differences in hours worked. Review of Economic Dynamics 9: 365–409.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Rogerson, R. 2007. Structural transformation and the deterioration of European labor market outcomes. Working paper no. 12889. Cambridge, MA: NBER.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rogerson, R., and J. Wallenius. 2007. Micro and macro elasticities in a life cycle model with taxes. Working paper no. 13017. Cambridge, MA: NBER.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Editor information

Copyright information

© 2018 Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

About this entry

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this entry

Rogerson, R. (2018). Unemployment and Hours of Work, Cross Country Differences. In: The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics. Palgrave Macmillan, London. https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-349-95189-5_2240

Download citation

Publish with us

Policies and ethics