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Subsidy competition and imperfect labor markets

Tadashi Morita, Yukiko Sawada and Kazuhiro Yamamoto

Journal of Public Economic Theory, 2020, vol. 22, issue 3, 698-728

Abstract: This study presents a two‐country model of subsidy competition for manufacturing firms under labor market imperfections. Because subsidies affect the distribution of firms, subsidies influence unemployment rates and welfare in both countries. We show that when labor market frictions are high, subsidy competition is beneficial, although subsidies under subsidy competition are inefficiently high. In the coordinated equilibrium, the supranational authority provides a subsidy to firms that equal the expected total search costs, which increases the number of firms relative to laissez‐faire and improves welfare relative to laissez‐faire and subsidy competition. Finally, we find that a rise in a country's labor market frictions raises the equilibrium subsidy rate, affects unemployment rates, and lowers welfare.

Date: 2020
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Handle: RePEc:bla:jpbect:v:22:y:2020:i:3:p:698-728