Central Bank event: Labour Markets over the Business Cycle

The Central Bank is hosting a one-day conference on “Labour Markets over the Business Cycle” on 11 December in Dame Street (programme below). There is a limited number of places still available. If you wish to attend, please email ieaadmin@centralbank.ie by 9 December. Please note that places will be allocated strictly on a first-come-first-served basis.

Labour Market Adjustment over the Business Cycle

A one-day conference at the Central Bank of Ireland

11 December 2014
Liffey room, Dame Street, Dublin 2

email ieaadmin@centralbank.ie to confirm attendance by 9 December



11 December  
08:45 Registration and coffee
09:00 Opening remarks – “Prospects and Challenges for the Irish Labour Market 2015 – 2020”. John Flynn (Head of Irish Economic Analysis Division, Central Bank of Ireland).
Session 1 


Cycles in employment, unemployment and wages
  Labour market transitions in Ireland – Thomas Conefrey (Irish Fiscal Advisory Council)
  Wage Cyclicality – Mario Izquierdo (Banco de Espana)


11:00 Coffee & tea break
Session 2
Labour market attachment
  Are the marginally attached unemployed or inactive? – Martina Lawless (CBI/ESRI)
  Sources of wage losses of displaced workers – Pedro Portugal (Banco de Portugal)
13:00 – 14:00 Lunch
Session 3
14:00 – 15:45
Wage flexibility
  Wage flexibility in Ireland – Olive Sweetman (Maynooth University)
  Wage Setting – Flexibility and Rigidity in the UK since 1975 – Jennifer Smith (University of Warwick)


Session 4


Labour market adjustment during and after the crisis: the role of policies and institutions
  Pedro Martins (Queen Mary University of London)
  Questions & discussion


  Closing remarks

Conference Ends

B&F Article on Jobs and Pensions

Here‘s a link to an article I wrote for Business and Finance that (somewhat belatedly) discusses the government’s jobs initiative and its financing. (The headline I had provided was the probably too obscure to be funny “A Worthwhile Irish Jobs Initative?”)

QNHS for 2010:Q4

Results from the Quarterly National Household Survey for 2010:Q4 are now available (press release here, full release here.)  The seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate for the quarter rose by one percentage point to 14.7%. This is a percentage point higher than the previously available proxy for the seasonally adjusted rate based on Live Register figures.

I’m not sure what the explanation is for such a large divergence between the QNHS and Live Register series for this quarter. One possible factor is that some people are now reaching the expiry of their benefit eligibility and thus falling off the Live Register while still being unemployed. The different behaviour for 2010:Q4 doesn’t seem to reflect a big drop in the labour force, due to emigration for example, because the decline in the labour force was of a similar magnitude to previous quarters.

Labour Party Pre-Budget Presentations

Before the snow hit, I gave a pre-budget presentation (pretty similar to my UCD presentation from today, though with some additional material on the banks) at a Labour Party pre-budget event. That presentation and three others are available here. Marie Sherlock from SIPTU and John Martin from OECD gave interesting presentations on labour market and training issues and Michael Collins from TCD gave a presentation on tax breaks.

Responding to the Jobs Crisis: Brian Nolan on Social Welfare, Employment and Unemployment

Brian Nolan addresses interactions between the benefits system and unemployment in the fourth part of the Irish Times Jobs Crisis series (article here).   Among the topics: unemployment traps due to high overall replacement rates; the relative importance of labour demand and supply factors in the rise in unemployment; the (limited) need to adjust social welfare benefits in line with changes in other incomes; and the importance of providing meaningful work opportunties as part of soical employment/benefit conditionality schemes.