Two‐Tier Labour Markets in the Great Recession: France versus Spain

33 Pages Posted: 14 Aug 2012

See all articles by Samuel Bentolila

Samuel Bentolila

Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros (CEMFI); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Pierre Cahuc

Ecole Polytechnique, Paris

Juan Jose Dolado

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Thomas Le Barbanchon

Bocconi university; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: August 2012

Abstract

France and Spain have similar labour market institutions and their unemployment rates were both around 8% just before the Great Recession but subsequently that rate has increased to 10% in France and to 23% in Spain. In this article, we assess the part of this differential that is due to the larger gap between the firing costs of permanent and temporary contracts, and the laxer rules on the use of the latter in Spain. A calibrated search and matching model indicates that Spain could have avoided about 45% of its unemployment surge had it adopted the French employment protection legislation.

Suggested Citation

Bentolila, Samuel and Cahuc, Pierre and Dolado, Juan Jose and Le Barbanchon, Thomas, Two‐Tier Labour Markets in the Great Recession: France versus Spain (August 2012). The Economic Journal, Vol. 122, Issue 562, pp. F155-F187, 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2129007 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0297.2012.02534.x

Samuel Bentolila (Contact Author)

Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros (CEMFI) ( email )

Casado del Alisal 5
28014 Madrid
Spain
+34 91 429 0551 (Phone)
+34 91 429 1056 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Pierre Cahuc

Ecole Polytechnique, Paris ( email )

1 rue Descartes
Paris, 75005
France

Juan Jose Dolado

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid - Department of Economics ( email )

Calle Madrid 126
Getafe, 28903
Spain
+34 91 624 9300 (Phone)
+34 91 624 9313 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.eco.uc3m.es/english/staff/

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Thomas Le Barbanchon

Bocconi university ( email )

Via Sarfatti, 25
Milan, MI 20136
Italy

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

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