Industry Mix, Local Labor Markets, and the Incidence of Trade Shocks
Steffen Müller, Jens Stegmaier, Moises Yi
Journal of Labor Economics,
We analyze how skill transferability and the local industry mix affect the adjustment costs of workers hit by a trade shock. Using German administrative data and novel measures of economic distance we construct an index of labor market absorptiveness that captures the degree to which workers from a particular industry are able to reallocate into other jobs. Among manufacturing workers, we find that the earnings loss associated with increased import exposure is much higher for those who live in the least absorptive regions. We conclude that the local industry composition plays an important role in the adjustment processes of workers.
European Firm Concentration and Aggregate Productivity
Tommaso Bighelli, Filippo di Mauro, Marc Melitz, Matthias Mertens
Journal of the European Economic Association,
This paper derives a European Herfindahl–Hirschman concentration index from 15 micro-aggregated country datasets. In the last decade, European concentration rose due to a reallocation of economic activity toward large and concentrated industries. Over the same period, productivity gains from an increasing allocative efficiency of the European market accounted for 50% of European productivity growth while markups stayed constant. Using country-industry variation, we show that changes in concentration are positively associated with changes in productivity and allocative efficiency. This holds across most sectors and countries and supports the notion that rising concentration in Europe reflects a more efficient market environment rather than weak competition and rising market power.
14.03.2023 • 7/2023
Gas storages full – economic outlook less gloomy
The severe slump in the German economy expected last fall has not materialised because gas supply stabilises. However, due to high inflation, higher real interest rates and declining real incomes, the economy is likely to remain weak. In its spring forecast, the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) expects production to grow by just 0.4% in 2023, and inflation to remain high at 5.8%.
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Konjunktur aktuell: Gasspeicher voll – Konjunkturaussichten weniger trüb
Im Frühjahr 2023 wirken gegenläufige Kräfte auf die Weltwirtschaft: Das Ende des Corona-Lockdowns in China gibt vor allem dem asiatischen Raum einen Schub, doch die anhaltend hohe Inflation belastet die fortgeschrittenen Volkswirtschaften weltweit. Alles in allem bleibt die internationale Konjunktur 2023 schwach. Für die deutsche Wirtschaft blieb der vielfach erwartete deutliche Einbruch aus, denn die Gasversorgungslage hat sich zunächst stabilisiert. Dennoch dürfte die Konjunktur wegen der Energiekosten, hoher Inflation, gestiegener Realzinsen und rückläufiger Realeinkommen schwach bleiben. Das Bruttoinlandsprodukt dürfte im Jahr 2023 um lediglich 0,4% zulegen, und die Inflationsrate bleibt mit 5,8% hoch.
14.02.2023 • 4/2023
Study on Europe's top bankers: Risky business despite bonus cap
Ten years ago, the EU Parliament decided to cap the flexible remuneration of bank managers. But the cap on bonuses misses its target: Managers of systemically important European banks take high risks without changes, shows a study by the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
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Correlation Scenarios and Correlation Stress Testing
Natalie Packham, Fabian Wöbbeking
Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization,
We develop a general approach for stress testing correlations of financial asset portfolios. The correlation matrix of asset returns is specified in a parametric form, where correlations are represented as a function of risk factors, such as country and industry factors. A sparse factor structure linking assets and risk factors is built using Bayesian variable selection methods. Regular calibration yields a joint distribution of economically meaningful stress scenarios of the factors. As such, the method also lends itself as a reverse stress testing framework: using the Mahalanobis distance or Highest Density Regions (HDR) on the joint risk factor distribution allows to infer worst-case correlation scenarios. We give examples of stress tests on a large portfolio of European and North American stocks.
29.09.2022 • 24/2022
The East German economy expanded strongly in the first half of 2022, but falls into recession in the second half of the year ‒ Implications of the Joint Economic Forecast Autumn 2022 and of Länder data from recent publications of the Statistical Office
The energy crisis is pushing the German economy into recession. This also affects the economy in East Germany. According to the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH), East German production will expand at a slightly stronger rate of 1.5% than in Germany as a whole. For the coming year, the decline in East Germany is expected to be less pronounced than in the west at 0.1% (Germany: ‒0.4%). For 2024, the economists forecast a growth of 1.7% (Germany: 1.9%).
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17.08.2022 • 19/2022
Labour mobility is part of structural change
The coal phase-out will also change the affected regions in that part of the workforce will migrate. Politicians should take this process into account in structural policy, because it cannot be completely prevented. A study published by the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) illustrates this with a historical example.
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What Does Codetermination Do?
Simon Jäger, Shakked Noy, Benjamin Schoefer
The authors provide a comprehensive overview of codetermination, that is, worker representation in firms’ governance and management. The available micro evidence points to zero or small positive effects of codetermination on worker and firm outcomes and leaves room for moderate positive effects on productivity, wages, and job stability. The authors also present new country-level, general-equilibrium event studies of codetermination reforms between the 1960s and 2010s, finding no effects on aggregate economic outcomes or the quality of industrial relations. They offer three explanations for the institution’s limited impact. First, existing codetermination laws convey little authority to workers. Second, countries with codetermination laws have high baseline levels of informal worker voice. Third, codetermination laws may interact with other labor market institutions, such as union representation and collective bargaining. The article closes with a discussion of the implications for recent codetermination proposals in the United States.
Energy Markets and Global Economic Conditions
Christiane Baumeister, Dimitris Korobilis, Thomas K. Lee
Review of Economics and Statistics,
We evaluate alternative indicators of global economic activity and other market funda-mentals in terms of their usefulness for forecasting real oil prices and global petroleum consumption. World industrial production is one of the most useful indicators. However, by combining measures from several different sources we can do even better. Our analysis results in a new index of global economic conditions and measures for assessing future energy demand and oil price pressures. We illustrate their usefulness for quantifying the main factors behind the severe contraction of the global economy and the price risks faced by shale oil producers in early 2020.