Temporary Work in Turbulent Times: The Swedish Experience

36 Pages Posted: 29 Jan 2002  

Bertil Holmlund

Uppsala University - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Donald Storrie

Göteborg University - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 2002

Abstract

Sweden has experienced a substantial increase in temporary work over the 1990s, with most of the rise occurring during a severe macroeconomic recession with mass unemployment. By the early 1990s, workers on fixed-term contracts accounted for 10 percent of the number of employees; by the end of the decade they accounted for 16 percent. The paper presents the Swedish institutional setting, documents basic stylized facts about fixed-term contracts, and discusses the causes of their increased prevalence. Our analysis reveals that open-ended and temporary employment exhibit strikingly different cyclical behavior with temporary employment being more volatile. A recession is associated with an initial decline in temporary employment followed by a sharp rise from the trough to the end of the recession. We argue that the severe recession of the 1990s is a major factor behind the rise in temporary work in Sweden. Adverse macroeconomic conditions make firms more prone to offer fixed-term contracts and workers more willing to accept them.

Keywords: Temporary Jobs, Labor Market Dynamics, Unemployment

JEL Classification: J64, E32

Suggested Citation

Holmlund, Bertil and Storrie, Donald, Temporary Work in Turbulent Times: The Swedish Experience (February 2002). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 671; Uppsala University, Dept. of Economics Working Paper 2002:1. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=298096

Bertil Holmlund (Contact Author)

Uppsala University - Department of Economics ( email )

SE-75120 Uppsala
Sweden
+46 18 471 1122 (Phone)
+46 18 471 1478 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.nek.uu.se/faculty/holmlund/index.html

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Donald Storrie

Göteborg University - Department of Economics ( email )

Box 640
SE 405 30 Gothenburg
Sweden

Paper statistics

Downloads
150
Rank
147,807
Abstract Views
1,449