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Institutional rules, labour demand and retirement through disability programme participation


  • Ossi Korkeamäki


  • Tomi Kyyrä



We use matched employer-employee data from Finland to model transitions out of work into sick leave and disability retirement. To identify the role of institutional factors we exploit reforms that changed medical requirements for disability pension eligibility and experience-rated employer contributions. We find that transitions to sick leave and disability pension benefits are relatively rare in growing establishments, but rather common in establishments with a high degree of excess worker turnover. We also show that transitions to disability retirement depend on the stringency of medical screening and the degree of experience rating applied to the employer.
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Suggested Citation

  • Ossi Korkeamäki & Tomi Kyyrä, 2012. "Institutional rules, labour demand and retirement through disability programme participation," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 25(2), pages 439-468, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:25:y:2012:i:2:p:439-468
    DOI: 10.1007/s00148-010-0330-z

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Duncan McVicar, 2008. "Why Have Uk Disability Benefit Rolls Grown So Much?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(1), pages 114-139, February.
    2. Nilsson Hakkala, Katariina & Heyman, Fredrik & Sjöholm, Fredrik, 2008. "Multinational Firms and Job Tasks," Working Paper Series 781, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
    3. Hassink, R. & van Ours, J.C. & Ridder, G., 1997. "Dismissal through disability," Other publications TiSEM b756763d-1536-4d61-84e4-9, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    4. Jonathan Gruber, 2000. "Disability Insurance Benefits and Labor Supply," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(6), pages 1162-1183, December.
    5. Harju, Jarkko, 2009. "Voluntary pension savings: the effects of the Finnish tax reform on savers' behaviour," Working Papers 7, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    6. David H. Autor & Mark G. Duggan, 2006. "The Growth in the Social Security Disability Rolls: A Fiscal Crisis Unfolding," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(3), pages 71-96, Summer.
    7. Miikka Rokkanen & Roope Uusitalo, 2013. "Changes in Job Stability – Evidence from Lifetime Job Histories," Finnish Economic Papers, Finnish Economic Association, vol. 26(2), pages 36-55, Autumn.
    8. Dan Black & Kermit Daniel & Seth Sanders, 2002. "The Impact of Economic Conditions on Participation in Disability Programs: Evidence from the Coal Boom and Bust," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 27-50, March.
    9. Mari Rege & Kjetil Telle & Mark Votruba, 2009. "The Effect of Plant Downsizing on Disability Pension Utilization," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(4), pages 754-785, June.
    10. Tomi Kyyrä & Ralf A. Wilke, 2007. "Reduction in the Long-Term Unemployment of the Elderly: A Success Story from Finland," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(1), pages 154-182, March.
    11. Sari Pekkala Kerr & Tuomas Pekkarinen & Roope Uusitalo, 2013. "School Tracking and Development of Cognitive Skills," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(3), pages 577-602.
    12. Gielen, Anne C. & van Ours, Jan C., 2006. "Age-specific cyclical effects in job reallocation and labor mobility," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 493-504, August.
    13. Kari, Seppo & Karikallio, Hanna & Pirttilä, Jukka, 2009. "The impact of dividend taxation on dividends and investment: New evidence based on a natural experiment," Working Papers 9, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    14. Pierre Koning, 2009. "Experience Rating and the Inflow into Disability Insurance," De Economist, Springer, vol. 157(3), pages 315-335, September.
    15. Kavonius, Ilja Kristian, 2010. "Fiscal policies in Europe and the United States during the Great Depression," Working Papers 13, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    16. Sanna-Mari Hynninen & Aki Kangasharju & Jaakko Pehkonen, 2009. "Matching Inefficiencies, Regional Disparities, and Unemployment," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 23(3), pages 481-506, September.
    17. Michele Campolieti, 2004. "Disability Insurance Benefits and Labor Supply: Some Additional Evidence," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(4), pages 863-890, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sergi Jiménez-Martín & Arnau Juanmarti Mestres & Judit Vall Castelló, 2016. "Great Recession and disability insurance in Spain," Economics Working Papers 1519, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 2017.
    2. Sergi Jiménez-Martín & Arnau Juanmarti Mestres & Judit Vall-Castello, 2016. "Great Recession and Disability in Spain," Working Papers 896, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    3. Matthew J. Hill & Jose Silva & Judit Vall, 2015. "Act Now: The Effects of the 2008 Spanish Disability Reform," Studies in Economics 1512, School of Economics, University of Kent.

    More about this item


    Disability pension; Sick leave; Experience rating; J14; J23; J26;

    JEL classification:

    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination


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