OECD Economics Department Working Papers

Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.

The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.

English, French

Unemployment and Labour Force Participation

Trends and Cycles

This paper deals with trends and cycles of unemployment and labour-force participation. Empirical evidence on both trends and cyclical movements in unemployment and participation is presented. Some of the mechanisms behind the observed developments are also analysed, examining how well they fit into different theoretical frameworks. The implications for the assessment of labour market slack of the observed interplay between unemployment and participation are discussed. The paper ends by presenting some unexplained puzzles concerning the interplay between trends and cycles of unemployment and participation ...


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