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Heterogeneous effects of competitiveness shocks on macroeconomic performance across euro area countries

Karsten Staehr () and Robert Vermeulen

The World Economy, 2019, vol. 42, issue 1, 68-86

Abstract: This paper considers how competitiveness impacts macroeconomic performance in 11 euro area countries. VAR models are estimated for the individual countries using quarterly data from 1995Q4 to 2013Q4. Besides unit labour costs as a competitiveness measure, the models include GDP, the current account balance and domestic credit. The empirical analyses show that changes in unit labour costs help explain GDP dynamics in the short and medium term in most countries, whereas they have little explanatory power for the current account balance or domestic credit for most countries. Overall, the effects of the unit labour costs vary substantially across the countries in the euro area. The heterogeneity suggests that policy measures aiming to improve economic growth, correct current account imbalances and ensure financial stability need to take country‐specific features into account.

Date: 2019
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https://doi.org/10.1111/twec.12675

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