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

On the Inverse Relationship between Unemployment and Absenteeism: Evidence from Natural Experiments and Worker Heterogeneity

Contents:

Author Info

  • Fahr, René

    ()
    (University of Paderborn)

  • Frick, Bernd

    ()
    (University of Paderborn)

Abstract

Although an inverse relationship between sickness absence and unemployment has been documented in a number of studies using either quarterly or annual data from different countries with varying institutional frameworks, it is not yet clear whether this empirical regularity is due to changes in the individual costs of absence when unemployment increases (incentive effect) or, alternatively, to changes in the composition of the workforce over the business cycle (selection effect). In order to provide evidence to evaluate the relative importance of both effects we first investigate the effects of changes in the unemployment benefit entitlement system with monthly absence data for East and West Germany for the years 1991-2004. Second, we analyze the impact of differences in the costs of unemployment on the annual absence rates of workers in different sickness insurance funds using state-level annual absence rates for the years 1993-2004. We find clear evidence in favor of an incentive effect.

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://ftp.iza.org/dp3171.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3171.

as in new window
Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3171

Contact details of provider:
Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page: http://www.iza.org

Order Information:
Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Email:

Related research

Keywords: absenteeism; unemployment; selection effect; incentive effect; natural experiment;

Find related papers by JEL classification:

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. Johansson, Per & Palme, Mårten, 2001. "Assessing the effect of public policy on worker absenteeism," Working Paper Series 2002:13, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  2. Jan Erik Askildsen & Espen Bratberg & Øivind Anti Nilsen, 2005. "Unemployment, labor force composition and sickness absence: a panel data study," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(11), pages 1087-1101.
  3. Arai, Mahmood & Skogman Thoursie, Peter, 2001. "Incentives and Selection in Cyclical Absenteeism," Working Paper Series 167, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
  4. Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-44, June.
  5. Denis Kwiatkowski & Peter C.B. Phillips & Peter Schmidt, 1991. "Testing the Null Hypothesis of Stationarity Against the Alternative of a Unit Root: How Sure Are We That Economic Time Series Have a Unit Root?," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 979, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  6. Doherty, N A, 1979. "National Insurance and Absence from Work," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 89(353), pages 50-65, March.
  7. Regina T. Riphahn & Anja Thalmaier, 2001. "Behavioral Effects of Probation Periods: An Analysis of Worker Absenteeism," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 221(2), pages 179-201.
  8. Barmby, Tim A. & Ercolani, Marco G. & Treble, John G., 2000. "Sickness Absence: An International Comparison," IRISS Working Paper Series 2000-03, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
  9. Thomas Bauer & Stefan Bender & Holger Bonin, 2004. "Dismissal Protection and Worker Flows in Small Establishments," RWI Discussion Papers 0014, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung.
  10. McGuire, Thomas G., 2000. "Physician agency," Handbook of Health Economics, in: A. J. Culyer & J. P. Newhouse (ed.), Handbook of Health Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 461-536 Elsevier.
  11. Knez, Marc & Simester, Duncan, 2001. "Firm-Wide Incentives and Mutual Monitoring at Continental Airlines," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(4), pages 743-72, October.
  12. Leigh, J. Paul, 1991. "Employee and job attributes as predictors of absenteeism in a national sample of workers: The importance of health and dangerous working conditions," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 127-137, January.
  13. Hesselius, Patrik, 2003. "Does Sick Absence Increase the Risk of Unemployment?," Working Paper Series 2003:15, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  14. Göran Kauermann & Renate Ortlieb, 2004. "Temporal pattern in number of staff on sick leave: the effect of downsizing," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series C, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 53(2), pages 355-367.
  15. Allen, Steven G, 1981. "An Empirical Model of Work Attendance," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 77-87, February.
  16. Stephen Nickell & D Nicolitsas, 1994. "Wages," CEP Discussion Papers dp0219, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  17. Barmby, Tim & Sessions, John G & Treble, John G, 1994. " Absenteeism, Efficiency Wages and Shirking," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 96(4), pages 561-66.
  18. S Brown & J G Sessions, 2004. "Absenteeism, Presenteeism, and Shirking," Economic Issues Journal Articles, Economic Issues, vol. 9(1), pages 15-23, March.
  19. Robert Drago & Mark Wooden, 1992. "The determinants of labor absence: Economic factors and workgroup norms across countries," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(4), pages 764-778, July.
  20. Brown, Sarah & Sessions, John G, 1996. " The Economics of Absence: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(1), pages 23-53, March.
  21. Leigh, J. Paul, 1985. "The effects of unemployment and the business cycle on absenteeism," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 159-170, May.
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. Vincenzo Scoppa & Daniela Vuri, 2013. "Absenteeism, Unemployment and Employment Protection Legislation: Evidence from Italy," CEIS Research Paper 257, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 07 Jan 2013.
  2. Mohamed Ali Ben Halima & Thierry Debrand & Camille Regaert, 2012. "Sick Leaves: Understanding Disparities Between French Departments," Working Papers DT50, IRDES institut for research and information in health economics, revised Oct 2012.
  3. Mohamed Ali Ben Halima & Thierry Debrand & Camille Regaert, 2011. "Arrêts maladie : comprendre les disparités départementales," Working Papers DT39, IRDES institut for research and information in health economics, revised Feb 2011.

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:iza:izadps:dp3171. 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: (Mark Fallak).

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.