Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Unemployment Benefits and Work Incentives: The U.S. Labor Market in the Great Recession

Contents:

Author Info

Abstract

In the midst of massive job destruction and sharply rising long-term unemployment, a series of unemployment insurance (UI) eligibility extensions were enacted in 2008-09 that raised the regular 26-week limit to as many as 99 weeks. In response, many leading economists and business press editorials invoked the 'laws of economics' to warn that since extended benefits reduce work incentives, UI extensions would exacerbate the long-term unemployment problem. This paper reviews the evidence put forward in support of the orthodox prediction, which has relied on extrapolating from pre-Great Recession conditions, particularly through the application of "spike at benefit-exhaustion" findings from the early 1980s. Much more compelling evidence can be found by direct examination of the 2008-10 data, which shows no support for UI related work disincentive effects.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.economicpolicyresearch.org/scepa/publications/workingpapers/2011/Howell_WP_2011_7.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA), The New School in its series SCEPA working paper series. SCEPA's main areas of research are macroeconomic policy, inequality and poverty, and globalization. with number 2011-7.

as in new window
Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: May 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:epa:cepawp:2011-7

Contact details of provider:
Postal: 6 East 16th Street, New York, NY 10003
Phone: 212-229-5901
Fax: 212-229-5903
Email:
Web page: http://www.economicpolicyresearch.org
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: Unemployment; Unemployment Insurance; Recession; Labor Market;

Other versions of this item:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Makoto Nakajima, 2011. "A quantitative analysis of unemployment benefit extensions," Working Papers 11-8, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  2. Raj Chetty, 2008. "Moral Hazard vs. Liquidity and Optimal Unemployment Insurance," NBER Working Papers 13967, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Jesse Rothstein, 2011. "Unemployment Insurance and Job Search in the Great Recession," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 43(2 (Fall)), pages 143-213.
  2. Henry S. Farber & Robert G. Valletta, 2013. "Do extended unemployment benefits lengthen unemployment spells? evidence from recent cycles in the U.S. labor market," Working Paper Series 2013-09, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  3. Christine Erhel & Charlotte Levionnois, 2013. "Labour Market Policies in Times of Crisis: A Comparison of the 1992-1993 and 2008-2010 Recessions," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 13060, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  4. Jeffrey Thompson & Timothy M. Smeeding, 2011. "Inequality in the Great Recession: The Case of the United States," Working Papers wp271, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
  5. Farber, Henry & Valletta, Robert G., 2013. "Do Extended Unemployment Benefits Lengthen Unemployment Spells? Evidence from Recent Cycles in the U.S. Labor Market," IZA Discussion Papers 7347, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Jeffrey P. Thompson & Timothy M. Smeeding, 2013. "Inequality and poverty in the United States: the aftermath of the Great Recession," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2013-51, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:epa:cepawp:2011-7. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bridget Fisher).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.