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New Extimates of the Duration and Risk of Unemployment for West-Germany

  • Ralf A. Wilke

This paper analyzes changes in the risk of unemployment and changes in the distribution of unemployment duration for the 26 to 41 years old working population in West-Germany during the 1980ties and 1990ties. The comprehensive IAB employment subsample 1975-1997 is used for the analysis. It contains employment and unemployment trajectories of about 500.000 individuals from West-Germany. The application of flexible nonparametric estimators yields results which are less sensitive to specification errors but they have only a descriptive nature. By conditioning on several observable variables such gender, education, marital status etc. we identify significant differences in the first three quintiles of the unemployment duration distribution. A large share of long term unemployment with only few exits to employment is observed in almost any of the segments. The analysis also considers general evolutions over time and variations along the business cycle. The paper therefore provides a collection of detailed stylized facts about the risk of becoming unemployed and the distribution of unemployment durations in West-Germany during the past two decades.

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Article provided by Duncker & Humblot, Berlin in its journal Schmollers Jahrbuch.

Volume (Year): 125 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 207-237

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Handle: RePEc:aeq:aeqsjb:v125_y2005_i2_q2_p207-237
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  1. Bernd Fitzenberger & Ralf A. Wilke, 2010. "Unemployment Durations in West Germany Before and After the Reform of the Unemployment Compensation System during the 1980s," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 11, pages 336-366, 08.
  2. Van den Berg, Gerard J., 2001. "Duration models: specification, identification and multiple durations," Handbook of Econometrics, in: J.J. Heckman & E.E. Leamer (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 55, pages 3381-3460 Elsevier.
  3. Lauer, Charlotte, 2003. "Education and Unemployment: A French-German Comparison," ZEW Discussion Papers 03-34, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  4. Hunt, Jennifer, 1995. "The Effect of Unemployment Compensation on Unemployment Duration in Germany," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(1), pages 88-120, January.
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