Masayuki Morikawa, 03 July 2017

Occupational licensing is a common solution to the information asymmetry that exists in many professions and services. Using original survey data from Japan, this column examines how occupational licensing affects labour participation and wages. A majority of respondents are found to possess occupational licenses, and licensing is positively associated with labour force participation, particularly amongst women and the elderly.

Ginger Jin, Michael Luca, Daniel Martin, 22 July 2015

Theories of voluntary disclosure suggest that even when disclosure is voluntary, market forces can drive firms to completely reveal information about their quality. This column investigates these predictions in an experimental setting. Laboratory results suggest widespread failures of the theoretical predictions – senders do not fully disclose, and receivers are not fully sceptical about non-disclosure. This suggests a role for policymakers to help customers understand the sound of silence.

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