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

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Author Info

  • 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: forthcoming in: Industrial and Corporate Change
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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  2. 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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  10. 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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  12. Troske, Kenneth R, 1996. "The Dynamic Adjustment Process of Firm Entry and Exit in Manufacturing and Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 39(2), pages 705-35, October.
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  14. Griliches, Zvi & Regev, Haim, 1995. "Firm productivity in Israeli industry 1979-1988," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 175-203, January.
  15. Schwerdt, Guido, 2011. "Labor turnover before plant closure: "Leaving the sinking ship" vs. "Captain throwing ballast overboard"," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 93-101, January.
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  17. Hethey, Tanja & Schmieder, Johannes F., 2010. "Using worker flows in the analysis of establishment turnover : evidence from German administrative data," FDZ Methodenreport 201006_en, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
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