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Voluntary income sharing and the design of unemployment insurance

  • Dan Anderberg

This paper uses a model of search unemployment to discuss the interaction between publicly provided insurance and informal insurance through voluntary income sharing, e.g., between spouses. Income sharing reduces the optimal level of public unemployment insurance. While it is always individually rational for partners to share income, the effect of voluntary income sharing on welfare will be negative unless partners can either observe each other's search behavior or are sufficiently altruistic towards each other. The model is also used to examine a family-based policy. The welfare gains from using such policy are argued to be small. Copyright Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Population Economics.

Volume (Year): 16 (2003)
Issue (Month): 1 (02)
Pages: 71-90

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:16:y:2003:i:1:p:71-90
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  1. Hopenhayn, Hugo A & Nicolini, Juan Pablo, 1997. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 412-38, April.
  2. Fredriksson, P. & Holmlund, B., 1998. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance in Search Equilibrium," Papers 1998-2, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
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  8. Cox, Donald, 1987. "Motives for Private Income Transfers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(3), pages 508-46, June.
  9. 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.
    • Stephen A. Woodbury, 2009. "Unemployment," Chapters, in: Labor and Employment Law and Economics, chapter 17 Edward Elgar.
  10. Flemming, J. S., 1978. "Aspects of optimal unemployment insurance : Search, leisure, savings and capital market imperfections," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 403-425, December.
  11. Cullen, Julie Berry & Gruber, Jonathan, 2000. "Does Unemployment Insurance Crowd Out Spousal Labor Supply?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(3), pages 546-72, July.
  12. James Costain, 1997. "Unemployment insurance with endogenous search intensity and precautionary saving," Economics Working Papers 243, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  13. Coate, Stephen & Ravallion, Martin, 1993. "Reciprocity without commitment : Characterization and performance of informal insurance arrangements," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 1-24, February.
  14. Mortensen, Dale T. & Pissarides, Christopher A., 1999. "New developments in models of search in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 39, pages 2567-2627 Elsevier.
  15. Chami, Ralph & Fischer, Jeffrey H, 1996. "Altruism, Matching, and Nonmarket Insurance," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(4), pages 630-47, October.
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