Working Paper

Temporary employment and the natural rate of unemployment


Abstract: This paper examines the determinants of the natural rate of unemployment using a combined cross section and time series data set. The results suggest that industry composition affects the natural rate. In particular, a higher share of temporary employment in a local labor market tends to lower the natural rate of unemployment--most likely through the matching function. The results suggest that the increase in the share of temporary employment may have reduced the natural rate as much as 1/4 percentage point. The results also indicate that unemployment insurance benefits tend to boost the natural rate, while having a more highly educated work force tends to lower it. However, the degree of union presence in a local labor market had little impact on the natural rate.

Keywords: Temporary employees; Labor market; Unemployment;

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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.)

Part of Series: Finance and Economics Discussion Series

Publication Date: 1999

Number: 1999-66