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Explaining International Variations in Self-Employment: Evidence from a Panel of OECD Countries


  • Simon C. Parker

    () (University of Durham)

  • Martin T. Robson

    () (University of Durham)


Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) data from 1972 to 1996 reveals substantial differences in the levels and trends of self-employment rates across countries. This article uses recently developed panel integration and cointegration techniques to explore the determinants of aggregate self-employment rates. We find that within the panel, self-employment rates are positively and significantly related to personal income tax rates and negatively and significantly related to the unemployment benefit replacement rate. This accords a central role to government tax and transfer policies, in contrast to nonrobust influences from macroeconomic variables, which have been widely used in previous studies.

Suggested Citation

  • Simon C. Parker & Martin T. Robson, 2004. "Explaining International Variations in Self-Employment: Evidence from a Panel of OECD Countries," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 71(2), pages 287-301, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:71:2:y:2004:p:287-301

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies


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