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The Effects of Mandating Benefits Packages

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  • Olivia S. Mitchell

Abstract

This paper identifies and, where possible, quantifies potential labor market consequences of government mandating of employee benefits. The author argues that mandating benefits could increase benefit coverage and generosity for numerous workers and their families. However, even when mandating benefits does improve benefit provision, there will be offsetting effects including wage and other benefit cuts, reduced work hours, reduced employment, and possibly output reductions in covered sectors. Employer bias against "expensive to insure" workers may also result, producing labor market sorting and segmentation. In addition, many workers currently without benefit coverage are employees of small firms, women, pan-time and minimum wage workers. Frequently, mandated benefit proposals exclude or reduce coverage for these workers to alleviate the financial burden on small firms. As a result, many uninsured people will not be helped by the type of mandated employee benefit program currently under review. A separate approach would probably be needed to meet the needs of those not covered by mandated benefit programs.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w3260.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3260.

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Date of creation: Feb 1990
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Publication status: published as Mitchell, Olivia S. "The Effects of Mandating Benefits Packages." Re-search in Labor Economics, edited by L. Bassi and D. Crawford, pp. 297-320. JAI Press, 1991.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3260

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References

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  1. Alan L. Gustman & Thomas L. Steinmeier, 1988. "An Analysis Of Pension Benefit Formulas, Pension Wealth And Incentives From Pensions," NBER Working Papers 2535, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Robert A. Hart & David N.F. Bell & Rudolf Frees & Seiichi Kawaski & Stephen A. Woodbury, 1988. "Trends in Non-Wage Labour Costs and their Effects on Employment: Final Report," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number saw1988.
  3. Mitchell, Olivia S, 1988. "Worker Knowledge of Pension Provisions," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 6(1), pages 21-39, January.
  4. Stephen A. Woodbury, 2009. "Unemployment," Book chapters authored by Upjohn Institute researchers, in: Kenneth G. Dau-Schmidt & Seth D. Harris & Orley Lobel (ed.), Labor and Employment Law and Economics, volume 2, pages 480-516 W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  5. Kotlikoff, Laurence J & Spivak, Avia & Summers, Lawrence H, 1982. "The Adequacy of Savings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 1056-69, December.
  6. Brown, Charles, 1988. "Minimum Wage Laws: Are They Overrated?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 133-45, Summer.
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Cited by:
  1. Gruber, J., 1992. "The Efficiency of a Group-Specific Mandated Benefit: Evidence from Health Insurance Benefits for Maternity," Working papers 92-19, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Budd, J.W., 1995. "The Effect of Strike Replacement Legislation of Employment," Papers 95-04, Minnesota - Industrial Relations Center.
  3. Dorothea Alewell, Kerstin Pull, 2001. "An Internatioal Comparison and Assessment of Maternity Leave Regulation," Working Paper Series A 2001-02, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
  4. Richard V. Burkhauser & Joseph F. Quinn, 1997. "Implementing Pro-Work Policies for Older Americans in the Twenty-First Century," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 378, Boston College Department of Economics.
  5. Olivia S. Mitchell, . "Retirement Systems in Developed and Developing Countries: Institutional Features, Economic Effects, and Lessons for Economies in Transition," Pension Research Council Working Papers 94-3, Wharton School Pension Research Council, University of Pennsylvania.
  6. Alewell, Dorothea & Pull, Kerstin, 2005. "Rechtsschutz für Mütter : eine ökonomische Analyse des Mutterschutzgesetzes und seiner Wirkungen auf die Beschäftigungssituation von Frauen (Legal protection for mothers * an economic analysis of ," Zeitschrift für ArbeitsmarktForschung - Journal for Labour Market Research, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany], vol. 38(2/3), pages 341-356.
  7. Christopher J. Ruhm, 1997. "Policy Watch: The Family and Medical Leave Act," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 175-186, Summer.
  8. Dorothea Alewell & Kerstin Pull, 2005. "Die Neugestaltung der Finanzierung des Mutterschutzes - ein Kommentar zum Mutterschutz-Urteil des Bundesverfassungsgerichtes," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 58(04), pages 22-27, 02.
  9. repec:fth:prinin:323 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. repec:iab:iabzaf:v:38:i:2/3:p:341-356 is not listed on IDEAS

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