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Unemployment insurance with a hidden labor market

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  • Álvarez-Parra, Fernando
  • Sánchez, Juan M.

Abstract

We consider the problem of optimal unemployment insurance (UI) in a repeated moral hazard framework. Unlike existing literature, unemployed individuals can secretly participate in a hidden labor market. This extension modifies the standard problem in three dimensions. First, it imposes an endogenous lower bound for the lifetime utility that a contract can deliver. Second, it breaks the identity between unemployment payments and consumption. And third, it hardens the encouragement of search effort. The optimal unemployment insurance system in an economy with a hidden labor market is simple, with an initial phase in which payments are relatively flat during unemployment and with no payments for long-term unemployed individuals. This scheme differs substantially from the one prescribed without a hidden labor market and resembles unemployment protection programs in many countries.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Monetary Economics.

Volume (Year): 56 (2009)
Issue (Month): 7 (October)
Pages: 954-967

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Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:56:y:2009:i:7:p:954-967

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505566

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Keywords: Unemployment insurance Hidden labor markets Recursive contracts;

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  1. Wang, Cheng & Williamson, Stephen, 1996. "Unemployment insurance with moral hazard in a dynamic economy," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 1-41, June.
  2. Hopenhayn, H. & Nicolini, P.J., 1996. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance," RCER Working Papers 421, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
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  4. Hansen, Gary D & Imrohoroglu, Ayse, 1992. "The Role of Unemployment Insurance in an Economy with Liquidity Constraints and Moral Hazard," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 118-42, February.
  5. Vodopivec, Milan & Raju, Dhushyanth, 2002. "Income support systems for the unemployed : issues and options," Social Protection Discussion Papers 25529, The World Bank.
  6. Pavoni, Nicola, 2007. "On optimal unemployment compensation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(6), pages 1612-1630, September.
  7. Friedrich Schneider & Dominik Enste, 2000. "Shadow Economies Around the World," IMF Working Papers 00/26, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Wang, Cheng, 1995. "Dynamic Insurance with Private Information and Balanced Budgets," Staff General Research Papers 5249, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  9. Banerjee, Biswajit, 1983. "The Role of the Informal Sector in the Migration Process: A Test of Probabilistic Migration Models and Labour Market Segmentation for India," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 35(3), pages 399-422, November.
  10. Wang, Cheng, 1995. "Dynamic Insurance with Private Information and Balanced Budgets," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 62(4), pages 577-95, October.
  11. Shavell, Steven & Weiss, Laurence, 1979. "The Optimal Payment of Unemployment Insurance Benefits over Time," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1347-62, December.
  12. Dominik H. Enste & Friedrich Schneider, 2000. "Shadow Economies: Size, Causes, and Consequences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(1), pages 77-114, March.
  13. Dilip Abreu & David Pearce & Ennio Stacchetti, 2010. "Towards a Theory of Discounted Repeated Games with Imperfect Monitoring," Levine's Working Paper Archive 199, David K. Levine.
  14. Spear, Stephen E & Srivastava, Sanjay, 1987. "On Repeated Moral Hazard with Discounting," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(4), pages 599-617, October.
  15. Abreu, Dilip & Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1990. "Toward a Theory of Discounted Repeated Games with Imperfect Monitoring," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(5), pages 1041-63, September.
  16. Fortin, Bernard & Marceau, Nicolas & Savard, Luc, 1997. "Taxation, wage controls and the informal sector," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 293-312, November.
  17. Wang, Cheng & Williamson, Steve, 1996. "Unemployment Insurance with Moral Hazard in a Dynamic Economy," Staff General Research Papers 5088, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  18. Johnson, Simon & Kaufmann, Daniel & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 1998. "Regulatory Discretion and the Unofficial Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 387-92, May.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Martín Gonzalez Rozada & Lucas Ronconi & Hernan Ruffo, 2011. "Protecting Workers against Unemployment in Latin America and the Caribbean: Evidence from Argentina," Research Department Publications 4759, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  2. David Bardey & Fernando Jaramillo, 2011. "Unemployment insurance/severance payments and informality in developing countries," Economics Working Paper from Condorcet Center for political Economy at CREM-CNRS 2012-06-ccr, Condorcet Center for political Economy.
  3. Jorge Andrés Tamayo & Jairo Núñez & Carlos Medina, 2013. "The Unemployment Subsidy Program in Colombia: An Assessment," IDB Publications 82158, Inter-American Development Bank.
  4. David L. Fuller & B. Ravikumar & Yuzhe Zhang, 2012. "Unemployment insurance fraud and optimal monitoring," Working Papers 2012-024, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  5. David L. Fuller & Marianna Kudlyak & Damba Lkhagvasuren, 2013. "Productivity insurance: the role of unemployment benefits in a multi-sector model," Working Paper 13-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  6. David Bardey & Fermando Jaramillo & Ximena Pena, 2013. "Unemployment insurance in the presence of an informal," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 011014, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO.
  7. Bardey, David & Jaramillo, Fernando, 2011. "Unemployment insurance and informality in developing countries," TSE Working Papers 11-257, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE), revised Nov 2011.

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