WorldCat Identities

Shimer, Robert

Works: 49 works in 256 publications in 1 language and 3,142 library holdings
Roles: Author, Photographer
Classifications: HB1, 331.12
Publication Timeline
Most widely held works about Robert Shimer
Most widely held works by Robert Shimer
Labor markets and business cycles by Robert Shimer( Book )

15 editions published between 2009 and 2010 in English and held by 303 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Labor Markets and Business Cycles integrates search and matching theory with the neoclassical growth model to better understand labor market outcomes. Robert Shimer shows analytically and quantitatively that rigid wages are important for explaining the volatile behavior of the unemployment rate in business cycles. The book focuses on the labor wedge that arises when the marginal rate of substitution between consumption and leisure does not equal the marginal product of labor. According to competitive models of the labor market, the labor wedge should be constant and equal to the labor income tax rate. But in U.S. data, the wedge is strongly countercyclical, making it seem as if recessions are periods when workers are dissuaded from working and firms are dissuaded from hiring because of an increase in the labor income tax rate. When job searches are time consuming and wages are flexible, search frictions - the cost of a job search - act like labor adjustment costs, further exacerbating inconsistencies between the competitive model and data. The book shows that wage rigidities can reconcile the search model with the data, providing a quantitatively more accurate depiction of labor markets, consumption, and investment dynamics. Developing detailed search and matching models, Labor Markets and Business Cycles will be the main reference for those interested in the intersection of labor market dynamics and business cycle research
Efficient unemployment insurance by Daron Acemoglu( Book )

15 editions published between 1997 and 1998 in English and held by 88 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper constructs a tractable general equilibrium model of search with risk-aversion. An increase in risk-aversion reduces wages, unemployment, and investment. Unemployment insurance (UI) has the reverse effect due to market generated moral hazard: insured workers seek high wage jobs with high unemployment risk. An economy with risk-neutral workers achieves maximal output without any UI. In contrast, in an economy with risk-averse workers, a positive level of UI maximizes output. Therefore, moderate UI not only improves risk-sharing, but also increases output
Productivity gains from unemployment insurance by Daron Acemoglu( Book )

14 editions published between 1999 and 2001 in English and held by 76 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper argues that unemployment insurance increases labor productivity by encouraging workers to seek higher productivity jobs, and by encouraging firms to create those jobs. We use a quantitative general equilibrium model to investigate whether this effect is comparable in magnitude to the standard moral hazard effects of unemployment insurance. Our model economy captures the behavior of the U.S. labor market for high school graduates quite well. When unemployment insurance becomes more generous starting from the current U.S. levels, there is an increase in unemployment similar in magnitude to the micro-estimates, but because the composition of jobs also changes, total output and welfare increase as well
The impact of young workers on the aggregate labor market by Robert Shimer( Book )

11 editions published in 1999 in English and held by 60 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper estimates the response of the unemployment rate and labor force participation rate to exogenous variation in the youth share of the working age population, using cross-state variation in lagged birth rates as an instrumental variable. A one percent increase in the youth share reduces the unemployment rate of young workers by more than one percent, and of older workers by more than two percent, holding conditions in other states constant. It raises the labor force participation rate by about a third of a percent for young workers, and by much less for older workers, again ceteris paribus. These results are consistent with increasing returns to scale ('thick market externalities') in the labor market. Young workers are frequently mismatched in their employment, and firms create jobs to take advantage of this mismatch. Data on gross job creation and destruction in manufacturing support this theory. I also reconcile these results with existing evidence on the labor market impact of young workers
Liquidity and insurance for the unemployed by Robert Shimer( Book )

14 editions published in 2005 in English and held by 56 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We study the optimal design of unemployment insurance for workers sampling job opportunities over time. We focus on the optimal timing of benefits and the desirability of allowing workers to freely access a riskless asset. When workers have constant absolute risk aversion preferences it is optimal to use a very simple policy: a constant benefit during unemployment, a constant tax during employment that does not depend on the duration of the spell, and free access to savings using a riskless asset. Away from this benchmark, for constant relative risk aversion preferences, the welfare gains of more elaborate policies are minuscule. Our results highlight two largely distinct roles for policy toward the unemployed: (a) ensuring workers have sufficient liquidity to smooth their consumption; and (b) providing unemployment benefits that serve as insurance against the uncertain duration of unemployment spells
Changes in unemployment duration and labor force attachment by Katharine G Abraham( Book )

12 editions published in 2001 in English and held by 54 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper accounts for the observed increase in unemployment duration relative to the unemployment rate in the U.S. over the past thirty years, typified by the record low level of short-term unemployment. We show that part of the increase is due to changes in how duration is measured, a consequence of the 1994 Current Population Survey redesign. Another part is due to the passage of the baby boomers into their prime working years. After accounting for these shifts, most of the remaining increase in unemployment duration relative to the unemployment rate is concentrated among women, whose unemployment rate has fallen sharply in the last two decades while their unemployment duration has increased. Using labor market transition data, we show that this is a consequence of the increase in women's labor force attachment
The assignment of workers to jobs in an economy with coordination frictions by Robert Shimer( Book )

10 editions published in 2001 in English and held by 48 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper studies the assignment of heterogeneous workers to heterogeneous jobs in the presence of coordination frictions. Firms offer human-capital-contingent wages, workers observe these and apply for a job. In a symmetric equilibrium, identical workers use identical mixed strategies in deciding where to apply, and the randomness introduced by mixed strategies generates equilibrium unemployment and vacancies. The equilibrium can be interpreted as the competitive equilibrium of a closely related model, ensuring constrained efficiency. The model generates a rich interaction between the heterogeneous workers and firms. Firms attract applications from multiple types of workers, and earn higher profits when they hire a more productive worker. Identical workers apply for jobs with different productivity and get higher wages when they land a more productive job. Despite this mismatch, I show that in some special cases, the model generates assortative matching, with a positive correlation between matched workers' and firms' productivity
The cyclical behavior of equilibrium unemployment and vacancies : evidence and theory by Robert Shimer( Book )

11 editions published in 2003 in English and held by 48 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper argues that a broad class of search models cannot generate the observed business-cycle-frequency fluctuations in unemployment and job vacancies in response to shocks of a plausible magnitude. In the U.S., the vacancy-unemployment ratio is 20 times as volatile as average labor productivity, while under weak assumptions, search models predict that the vacancy-unemployment ratio and labor productivity have nearly the same variance. I establish this claim both using analytical comparative statics in a very general deterministic search model and using simulations of a stochastic version of the model. I show that a shock that changes average labor productivity primarily alters the present value of wages, generating only a small movement along a downward sloping Beveridge curve (unemployment-vacancy locus). A shock to the job destruction rate generates a counterfactually positive correlation between unemployment and vacancies. In both cases, the shock is only slightly amplified and the model exhibits virtually no propagation. I reconcile these findings with an existing literature and argue that the source of the model's failure is lack of wage rigidity, a consequence of the assumption that wages are determined by Nash bargaining
The consequences of rigid wages in search models by Robert Shimer( Book )

10 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 45 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

The standard theory of equilibrium unemployment, the Mortensen-Pissarides search and matching model, cannot explain the magnitude of the business cycle fluctuations in two of its central elements, unemployment and vacancies. Modifying the model to make the present value of wages unresponsive to current labor market conditions amplifies fluctuations in unemployment and vacancies by an order of magnitude, significantly improving the performance of the model. Despite this, the welfare consequences of such rigid wages is negligible
Search-theoretic models of the labor market : a survey by Richard Donald Rogerson( Book )

11 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 45 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

"We survey search-theoretic models of the labor market and discuss their usefulness for analyzing labor market dynamics, job turnover, and wages. We first examine single-agent models, showing how they can incorporate many interesting features and generate rich predictions. We then consider equilibrium models that endogenize several variables that are treated parametrically in single-agent models, including the arrival rate of job offers and the wage distribution. We survey alternative formulations of these models, emphasizing two key issues: how workers and firms meet, and how wages are determined. We emphasize throughout the implications of alternative assumptions for turnover, wage dispersion, and efficiency"--NBER website
Efficient wage dispersion by Daron Acemoglu( Book )

13 editions published between 1996 and 1997 in English and held by 36 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

How to build a more profitable wills and estates practice by J. Brooke Aker( Book )

2 editions published between 1968 and 1977 in English and held by 35 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Mismatch by Robert Shimer( Book )

10 editions published in 2005 in English and held by 34 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper develops a dynamic model of mismatch. Workers and jobs are randomly assigned to labor markets. Each labor market clears at each instant but some labor markets have more workers than jobs, hence unemployment, and some have more jobs than workers, hence vacancies. As workers and jobs move between labor markets, some unemployed workers find vacant jobs and some employed workers lose or leave their job and become unemployed. The model is quantitatively consistent with the comovement of unemployment, job vacancies, and the rate at which unemployed workers find jobs over the business cycle. It can also address a variety of labor market phenomena, including duration dependence in the job finding probability and employer-to-employer transitions, and it helps explain the cyclical volatility of vacancies and unemployment
Reservation wages and unemployment insurance by Robert Shimer( Book )

10 editions published between 2006 and 2007 in English and held by 33 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper argues that a risk-averse worker's after-tax reservation wage encodes all the relevant information about her welfare. This insight leads to a novel test for the optimality of unemployment insurance based on the responsiveness of reservation wages to unemployment benefits. Some existing estimates imply significant gains to raising the current level of unemployment benefits in the United States, but highlight the need for more research on the determinants of reservation wages. Our approach complements those based on Baily's (1978) test
On the optimal timing of benefits with heterogenous workers and human capital depreciation by Robert Shimer( Book )

11 editions published in 2006 in English and held by 30 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper studies the optimal timing of unemployment insurance subsidies in a McCall search model. Risk-averse workers sequentially sample random job opportunities. Our model distinguishes unemployment subsidies from consumption during unemployment by allowing workers to save and borrow freely. When the insurance agency faces a group of homogeneous workers solving stationary search problems, the optimal subsidies are independent of unemployment duration. In contrast, when workers are heterogeneous or when human capital depreciates during the spell, the optimal subsidy is no longer constant. We explore the main determinants of the shape of the optimal subsidy schedule, isolating forces for subsidies to optimally rise or fall with duration
Search and rest unemployment by Fernando Alvarez( Book )

13 editions published in 2008 in English and held by 24 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper extends Lucas and Prescott's (1974) search model to develop a notion of rest unemployment. The economy consists of a continuum of labor markets, each of which produces a heterogeneous good. There is a constant returns to scale production technology in each labor market, but labor productivity is continually hit by idiosyncratic shocks, inducing the costly reallocation of workers across labor markets. Under some conditions, some workers may be rest-unemployed, waiting for local labor market conditions to improve, rather than engaged in time consuming search. The model has distinct notions of unemployment (moving to a new labor market or waiting for labor market conditions to improve) and inactivity (enjoying leisure while disconnected from the labor market). We obtain closed-form expressions for key aggregate variables and use them to evaluate the model. Quantitatively, we find that in the U.S. economy many more people may be in rest unemployment than in search unemployment
Reassessing the ins and outs of unemployment by Robert Shimer( Book )

9 editions published in 2007 in English and held by 23 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper uses readily accessible data to measure the probability that an employed worker becomes unemployed and the probability that an unemployed worker finds a job, the ins and outs of unemployment. Since 1948, the job finding probability has accounted for three-quarters of the fluctuations in the unemployment rate in the United States and the employment exit probability for one-quarter. Fluctuations in the employment exit probability are quantitatively irrelevant during the last two decades. Using the underlying microeconomic data, the paper shows that these results are not due to compositional changes in the pool of searching workers, nor are they due to movements of workers in and out of the labor force. These results contradict the conventional wisdom that has guided the development of macroeconomic models of the labor market during the last fifteen years
Adverse selection in competitive search equilibrium by Veronica Guerrieri( Book )

7 editions published in 2009 in English and held by 13 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We extend the concept of competitive search equilibrium to environments with private information, and in particular adverse selection. Principals (e.g. employers or agents who want to buy assets) post contracts, which we model as revelation mechanisms. Agents (e.g. workers, or asset holders) have private information about the potential gains from trade. Agents observe the posted contracts and decide where to apply, trading off the contracts' terms of trade against the probability of matching, which depends in general on the principals' capacity constraints and market search frictions. We characterize equilibrium as the solution to a constrained optimization problem, and prove that principals offer separating contracts to attract different types of agents. We then present a series of applications, including models of signaling, insurance, and lemons. These illustrate the usefulness and generality of the approach, and serve to contrast our findings with standard results in both the contract and search literatures
Dynamic adverse selection : a theory of illiquidity, fire sales, and flight to quality by Veronica Guerrieri( Book )

7 editions published in 2012 in English and held by 10 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We develop a dynamic equilibrium model of asset markets affected by adverse selection. There exists a unique equilibrium where better assets trade at higher prices but in less liquid markets. Sellers of high-quality assets can separate because they are more willing to accept a lower trading probability. As a result, the emergence of adverse selection generates a drop in liquidity. It may also lead to a decline in the price-dividend ratio-a fire sale-and a flight to quality. Subsidies to purchasing assets may be Pareto improving and can reverse the fire sale and flight to quality
Search in macroeconomic models of the labor market by Richard Donald Rogerson( Book )

7 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 7 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This chapter assesses how models with search frictions have shaped our understanding of aggregate labor market outcomes in two contexts: business cycle fluctuations and long-run (trend) changes. We first consolidate data on aggregate labor market outcomes for a large set of OECD countries. We then ask how models with search improve our understanding of these data. Our results are mixed. Search models are useful for interpreting the behavior of some additional data series, but search frictions per se do not seem to improve our understanding of movements in total hours at either business cycle frequencies or in the long-run. Still, models with search seem promising as a framework for understanding how different wage setting processes affect aggregate labor market outcomes -- National Bureau of Economic Research web site
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Audience level: 0.53 (from 0.06 for Labor mark ... to 0.82 for Efficient ...)

Labor markets and business cycles
Alternative Names
Robert Shimer American economist

Shimer, Robert Jay 1968-

English (213)