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Unemployment Duration, Benefit Duration and the Business Cycle

  • Olympia Bover

    (Banco de Espana CEMFI, Madrid.)

  • Manuel Arellano

    (Banco de Espana CEMFI, Madrid.)

  • Samuel Bentolila

    (Banco de Espana CEMFI, Madrid.)

In this paper we study the effects of unemployment benefit duration and the business cycle on unemployment duration. We construct durations for individuals entering unemployment from a longitudinal sample of Spanish men in 1987--94. Estimated discrete hazard models indicate that receipt of unemployment benefits significantly reduces the hazard of leaving unemployment. At durations of three months, when the largest effects occur, the hazard for workers without benefits is twice as large as that for workers with benefits. Favourable business conditions increase the hazard of leaving unemployment. At sample-period magnitudes, this effect is significantly smaller than that of benefit receipt. Copyright 2002 Royal Economic Society

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Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 112 (2002)
Issue (Month): 479 (April)
Pages: 223-265

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:112:y:2002:i:479:p:223-265
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  1. Hopenhayn, H. & Nicolini, P.J., 1996. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance," RCER Working Papers 421, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
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  8. Ahn, Namkee & Ugidos-Olazabal, Arantza, 1995. "Duration of Unemployment in Spain: Relative Effects of Unemployment Benefit and Family Characteristics," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 57(2), pages 249-64, May.
  9. Ham, John C & LaLonde, Robert J, 1996. "The Effect of Sample Selection and Initial Conditions in Duration Models: Evidence from Experimental Data on Training," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(1), pages 175-205, January.
  10. Guido W. Imbens & Lisa M. Lynch, 1993. "Re-Employment Probabilities over the Business Cycle," NBER Working Papers 4585, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Oliver Jean Blanchard & Peter Diamond, 1990. "The Cyclical Behovior of the Gross Flows of U.S. Workers," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 21(2), pages 85-156.
  12. Moffitt, Robert & Nicholson, Walter, 1982. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance on Unemployment: The Case of Federal Supplemental Benefits," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(1), pages 1-11, February.
  13. Narendranathan, W & Nickell, S & Stern, J, 1985. "Unemployment Benefits Revisited," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 95(378), pages 307-29, June.
  14. Sueyoshi, Glenn T, 1995. "A Class of Binary Response Models for Grouped Duration Data," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(4), pages 411-31, Oct.-Dec..
  15. Atkinson, Anthony B & Micklewright, John, 1991. "Unemployment Compensation and Labor Market Transitions: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(4), pages 1679-1727, December.
  16. Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
  17. Narendranathan, W & Stewart, Mark B, 1993. "How Does the Benefit Effect Vary as Unemployment Spells Lengthen?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(4), pages 361-81, Oct.-Dec..
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