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‘Marginal Employment’: Stepping Stone or Dead End? Evaluating the German Experience

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  • Freier, Ronny

    ()
    (Stockholm School of Economics)

  • Steiner, Viktor

    ()
    (Free University of Berlin)

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    Abstract

    'Marginal employment', i.e. employment at low working hours and earnings not covered by social security, has been gaining importance in the German economy over the past decade. Using a large newly available panel data set and statistical matching techniques, we analyse the effects of marginal employment on future individual outcome variables such as unemployment, regular employment and earnings. In addition to average treatment effects, we calculate dynamic and cumulative treatment effects accounting for total time spent in various labor market states and related earnings over a period of three years. We find that marginal employment (i) does not affect time spent in regular employment within a three-years' observation period, (ii) reduces future unemployment, (iii) slightly increases cumulated future earnings, on average, and (iv) is associated with a small negative cumulative earnings effect for older workers in west Germany.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3175.

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    Length: 30 pages
    Date of creation: Nov 2007
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3175

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    Related research

    Keywords: marginal employment; social security contributions; wage subsidies; labour market policy; evaluation of treatment effect;

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    1. Ichino, Andrea & Mealli, Fabrizia & Nannicini, Tommaso, 2006. "From Temporary Help Jobs to Permanent Employment: What Can We Learn from Matching Estimators and their Sensitivity?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5736, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. James Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 1998. "Characterizing Selection Bias Using Experimental Data," NBER Working Papers 6699, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Lechner, Michael, 1999. "Earnings and Employment Effects of Continuous Off-the-Job Training in East Germany after Unification," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 17(1), pages 74-90, January.
    4. Viktor Steiner & Katharina Wrohlich, 2004. "Work Incentives and Labor Supply Effects of the 'Mini-Jobs Reform' in Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 438, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    5. René Böheim & Andrea Weber, 2011. "The Effects of Marginal Employment on Subsequent Labour Market Outcomes," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(2), pages 165-181, 05.
    6. Haan, Peter & Steiner, Viktor, 2006. "Making Work Pay for the Elderly Unemployed: Evaluating Alternative Policy Reforms for Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 2424, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Sianesi, Barbara, 2001. "An evaluation of the active labour market programmes in Sweden," Working Paper Series 2001:5, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    8. Ronny Freier & Viktor Steiner, 2007. "'Marginal Employment' and the Demand for Heterogenous Labour: Empirical Evidence from a Multi-factor Labour Demand Model for Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 662, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    9. Marco Caliendo & Sabine Kopeinig, 2008. "Some Practical Guidance For The Implementation Of Propensity Score Matching," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(1), pages 31-72, 02.
    10. Michael Fertig & Jochen Kluve, 2006. "Alternative Beschäftigungsformen in Deutschland: Effekte der Neuregelung von Zeitarbeit, Minijobs und Midijobs," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 75(3), pages 97-117.
    11. Jürgen Schupp & Elisabeth Birkner, 2004. "Kleine Beschäftigungsverhältnisse: kein Jobwunder: dauerhafter Rückgang von Zweitbeschäftigungen?," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 71(34), pages 487-497.
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