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Unemployment impacts differently on the extremes of the distribution of a comprehensive well-being measure

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  • Martin Binder
  • Alex Coad

Abstract

Unemployment has a heterogeneous effect on well-being. We combine a quantile analysis with matching techniques to analyse the negative impact of unemployment along the well-being distribution of a comprehensive well-being variable. In our analysis of British Household Panel Survey data (1996-2008) we focus on transitions into unemployment and find that average effects of unemployment on a comprehensive well-being variable are less strong than on typical life satisfaction measures. The effect of unemployment on a broad mental well-being variable (GHQ-12) is reversed and mentally less well-off individuals suffer from unemployment more strongly than those scoring high in mental well-being.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Binder & Alex Coad, 2015. "Unemployment impacts differently on the extremes of the distribution of a comprehensive well-being measure," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(8), pages 619-627, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:22:y:2015:i:8:p:619-627
    DOI: 10.1080/13504851.2014.962219
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1080/13504851.2014.962219
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Krueger, Alan B. & Schkade, David A., 2008. "The reliability of subjective well-being measures," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(8-9), pages 1833-1845, August.
    2. Sergio Firpo, 2007. "Efficient Semiparametric Estimation of Quantile Treatment Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(1), pages 259-276, January.
    3. Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2012. "Jobless, Friendless and Broke: What Happens to Different Areas of Life Before and After Unemployment?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 79(315), pages 557-575, July.
    4. Christopher Boyce & Alex Wood & Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2013. "Is Personality Fixed? Personality Changes as Much as “Variable” Economic Factors and More Strongly Predicts Changes to Life Satisfaction," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 111(1), pages 287-305, March.
    5. Andrew E. Clark & Ed Diener & Yannis Georgellis & Richard E. Lucas, 2008. "Lags And Leads in Life Satisfaction: a Test of the Baseline Hypothesis," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(529), pages 222-243, June.
    6. Anne C. Gielen & Jan C. Ours, 2014. "Unhappiness and Job Finding," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 81(323), pages 544-565, July.
    7. van Praag, B. M. S. & Frijters, P. & Ferrer-i-Carbonell, A., 2003. "The anatomy of subjective well-being," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 29-49, May.
    8. Binder, Martin & Freytag, Andreas, 2013. "Volunteering, subjective well-being and public policy," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 97-119.
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    Cited by:

    1. Reichert, Arndt R. & Tauchmann, Harald, 2017. "Workforce reduction, subjective job insecurity, and mental health," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 133(C), pages 187-212.
    2. Simonetta Longhi & Alita Nandi & Mark Bryan & Sara Connolly & Cigdem Gedikli, 2018. "Unhappiness in unemployment – is it the same for everyone?," Working Papers 2018007, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.
    3. Schiele, Valentin & Schmitz, Hendrik, 2016. "Quantile treatment effects of job loss on health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 59-69.

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