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Active labour market policy vs employment tax credits: lessons from recent UK reforms

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Author Info

  • Blundell, Richard

    ()
    (IFAU - Office of Labour Market Policy Evaluation)

  • Meghir, Costas

    (IFAU - Office of Labour Market Policy Evaluation)

Abstract

Many welfare-to-work programs in both North America and Europe are directed at making work pay for the low skilled. This paper identifies two alternative policies that are motivated by this same objective – active labour market programs that involve wage subsidies together with improved job matching; and earned income tax credits that supplement wages for working low-income families. Although sharing similar concerns over labour market incentives for low skilled workers, these alternative policies typically differ in many important ways. We present an evaluation of the impacts of two such recent programs designed to enhance the labour market attachment of low-wage workers in the UK. These programs have many features in common and are similar to many policy proposals in Europe and North America. The evaluation of the UK reforms brings empirical evidence into the debate on the effectiveness of these programs and is used to assess what aspects of their design work well and what aspects could be improved.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy in its series Working Paper Series with number 2002:1.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: 15 Jan 2002
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Swedish Economic Policy Review, 2001, pages 239-266.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:2002_001

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Postal: IFAU, P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: (+46) 18 - 471 70 70
Fax: (+46) 18 - 471 70 71
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Web page: http://www.ifau.se/
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Related research

Keywords: welfare reform; tax credits; wage subsidies; labour supply;

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References

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  1. Jeff Grogger & Charles Michalopoulos, 2000. "Welfare Dynamics under Time Limits," JCPR Working Papers 125, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  2. Keane, Michael & Moffitt, Robert, 1998. "A Structural Model of Multiple Welfare Program Participation and Labor Supply," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(3), pages 553-89, August.
  3. Richard Blundell & Hilary W. Hoynes, 2004. "Has 'In-Work' Benefit Reform Helped the Labor Market?," NBER Chapters, in: Seeking a Premier Economy: The Economic Effects of British Economic Reforms, 1980-2000, pages 411-460 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Richard Blundell & Thomas MaCurdy, 1998. "Labour supply: a review of alternative approaches," IFS Working Papers W98/18, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  5. Jeffrey Grogger, 2004. "Time Limits and Welfare Use," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  6. Richard Blundell & Monica Costa Dias, 2000. "Evaluation methods for non-experimental data," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 21(4), pages 427-468, January.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Pavoni, Nicola & Violante, Giovanni L, 2006. "Optimal Welfare-to-Work Programs," CEPR Discussion Papers 5937, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Sarah Hamersma, 2008. "The effects of an employer subsidy on employment outcomes: A study of the work opportunity and welfare-to-work tax credits," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(3), pages 498-520.
  3. Ayala, Luis & Rodriguez, Magdalena, 2006. "The latin model of welfare: Do `insertion contracts' reduce long-term dependence?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(6), pages 799-822, December.
  4. Bart Cockx & Henri Sneessens & Bruno Van der linden, 2004. "Allégements de charges sociales : une mesure à promouvoir mais à réformer," Reflets et perspectives de la vie économique, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(1), pages 55-68.
  5. Ana Paula Ribeiro & Margarida Ruivo, 2007. "A case for including fiscal policies in the Eurostat Labour Market Policy database," CEF.UP Working Papers 0705, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.

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