New Facts About Factor-Demand Dynamics: Employment, Jobs, and Workers
Daniel S. Hamermesh, Wolter H. J. Hassink, Jan C. van Ours
NBER Working Paper No. 4625
We provide a unified discussion of the relations among flows of workers, changes in employment and changes in the number of jobs at the level of the firm. Using the only available set of data (a nationally representative sample of Dutch firms in 1988 and 1990) we discover that: 1) Nearly half of all hiring is by firms where employment is not growing; 2) Over half of all firing is by firms that are not contracting; 3) Most firing is by firms that are also hiring; 4) Flows of workers within firms are small compared to flows into and out of firms; and 5) Accounting for simultaneous creation and destruction of jobs within firms adds roughly 15 percent to estimates of economywide job creation and destruction. The results imply that macroeconomic fluctuations can have substantial effects beyond those indicated by net employment changes at the firm level, and that studies of dynamic factor demand must account for variations in gross flows of workers.
Published: Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, No.41/42, pp.21-39 (January 1996).