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Shirking, Unemployment and Aggregate Fluctuations

Paul Gomme ()

International Economic Review, 1999, vol. 40, issue 1, 3-21

Abstract: Empirically, real wages exhibit relatively little cyclical variation and a weak cyclical pattern. Early real business cycle (RBC) models predict, to the contrary, large, procyclical real wage movements. Incorporating efficiency wages into a RBC environment would seem promising since one prediction from the efficiency wage literature is real wage rigidity. This paper evaluates a common microfoundation for efficiency wages, the shirking model, with respect to its predictions for real wages within a RBC-style model. Simulations of the model reveal that it can generate dampened but still strongly procyclical real wage behavior. Copyright 1999 by Economics Department of the University of Pennsylvania and the Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association.

Date: 1999
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