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Does Leaving Welfare Improve Health? Evidence for Germany

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Author Info

  • Huber, Martin

    ()
    (University of St. Gallen)

  • Lechner, Michael

    ()
    (University of St. Gallen)

  • Wunsch, Conny

    ()
    (University of Basel)

Abstract

Using exceptionally rich linked administrative and survey information on German welfare recipients we investigate the health effects of transitions from welfare to employment and of assignments to welfare-to-work programmes. Applying semi-parametric propensity score matching estimators we find that employment substantially increases (mental) health. The positive effects are mainly driven by males and individuals with bad initial health conditions and are largest for males with poor health. In contrast, the effects of welfare-to-work programmes, including subsidized jobs, are ambiguous and statistically insignificant for most outcomes. Robustness checks that include a semi-parametric instrumental variable approach do not provide reasons for concern.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4370.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Health Economics, 2011, 20 (4), 484-504
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4370

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Keywords: health effects; welfare programs;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Huber, Martin & Lechner, Michael & Wunsch, Conny, 2013. "The performance of estimators based on the propensity score," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 175(1), pages 1-21.
  2. Huber, Martin & Lechner, Michael & Steinmayr, Andreas, 2012. "Radius matching on the propensity score with bias adjustment: finite sample behaviour, tuning parameters and software implementation," Economics Working Paper Series 1226, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
  3. Martin Huber & Michael Lechner & Conny Wunsch, 2013. "The effect of firms' partial retirement policies on the labour market outcomes of their employees," Working papers 2013/12, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
  4. Arndt Reichert & Harald Tauchmann, 2011. "The Causal Impact of Fear of Unemployment on Psychological Health," Ruhr Economic Papers 0266, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  5. Ayala, Luis & Rodríguez, Magdalena, 2013. "Health-related effects of welfare-to-work policies," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 103-112.
  6. Achatz, Juliane & Trappmann, Mark, 2011. "Arbeitsmarktvermittelte Abgänge aus der Grundsicherung : der Einfluss von personen- und haushaltsgebundenen Barrieren," IAB Discussion Paper 201102, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  7. Huber, Martin, 2012. "Identifying causal mechanisms in experiments (primarily) based on inverse probability weighting," Economics Working Paper Series 1213, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science, revised May 2013.
  8. Eggs, Johannes, 2013. "Unemployment benefit II, unemployment and health," IAB Discussion Paper 201312, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].

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