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Lingering Illness or Sudden Death? Pre-Exit Employment Developments in German Establishments

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  • Fackler, Daniel

    ()
    (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)

  • Schnabel, Claus

    ()
    (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)

  • Wagner, Joachim

    ()
    (Leuphana University Lüneburg)

Abstract

Using a large administrative dataset for Germany, this paper compares employment developments in exiting and surviving establishments. For both West and East Germany we find a clear "shadow of death" effect reflecting lingering illness: establishments shrink dramatically already several years before closure, employment growth rates differ strongly between exiting and surviving establishments, and this difference becomes stronger as exit approaches. We further show that prior to exit the workforce becomes on average more skilled, more female and older in exiting compared to surviving establishments. These effects are more clearly visible in West than in East Germany. Our results also hold when applying a matching approach.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7081.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2012
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Industrial and Corporate Change 2014, 34 (4), 1121-1140
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7081

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Keywords: firm exits; shadow of death; Germany;

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References

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  1. Guido Schwerdt, 2007. "Labor Turnover before Plant Closure:'Leaving the sinking ship' vs. 'Captain throwing ballast overboard'," Economics Working Papers ECO2007/22, European University Institute.
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  4. Boris Hirsch & Thorsten Schank & Claus Schnabel, 2008. "Differences in Labor Supply to Monopsonistic Firms and the Gender Pay Gap: An Empirical Analysis Using Linked Employer-Employee Data from Germany," Working Papers 1111, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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  6. Carlos Carreira & Paulino Teixeira, 2009. "The Shadow of Death: Analysing the Pre-Exit Productivity of Portuguese Manufacturing Firms," GEMF Working Papers 2008-05, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
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  11. Lori G. Kletzer, 1998. "Job Displacement," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(1), pages 115-136, Winter.
  12. Richard Disney & Jonathan Haskel & Ylva Heden, 2003. "Entry, Exit and Establishment Survival in UK Manufacturing," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 91-112, 03.
  13. Griliches, Zvi & Regev, Haim, 1995. "Firm productivity in Israeli industry 1979-1988," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 175-203, January.
  14. Marcus Box, 2008. "The death of firms: exploring the effects of environment and birth cohort on firm survival in Sweden," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 379-393, December.
  15. Anja Spengler, 2008. "European Data Watch: The Establishment History Panel," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 128(3), pages 501-509.
  16. Silviano Esteve-Pérez & Juan Mañez-Castillejo, 2008. "The Resource-Based Theory of the Firm and Firm Survival," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 231-249, March.
  17. Paul A. Lengermann & Lars Vilhuber, 2002. "Abandoning the Sinking Ship: The Composition of Worker Flows Prior to Displacement," Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics Technical Papers 2002-11, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
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