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Employment Effects of Army Service and Veterans' Compensation: Evidence from the Australian Vietnam-Era Conscription Lotteries

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  • Peter Siminski

    (University of Wollongong)

Abstract

Exploiting Australia's National Service lotteries of 1965 to 1972, I estimate the effect of army service on employment outcomes. Population data from military personnel records, tax returns, veterans' compensation records, and the Census facilitate a rich and precise analysis, identified by 53,000 complying conscripts. The estimated employment effect is −12 percentage points (95% CI: −13, −11) overall, −37 for those who served in Vietnam and 0 for those who served only in Australia. It emerged in the 1990s, mirrored by veterans' disability pension effects. These results contrast with those for the United States, possibly reflecting employment disincentives associated with Australia's veterans' compensation system. © 2013 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Siminski, 2013. "Employment Effects of Army Service and Veterans' Compensation: Evidence from the Australian Vietnam-Era Conscription Lotteries," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(1), pages 87-97, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:95:y:2013:i:1:p:87-97
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Keane, Michael P., 2010. "Structural vs. atheoretic approaches to econometrics," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 156(1), pages 3-20, May.
    2. Peter Siminski & Simon Ville, 2011. "Long-Run Mortality Effects of Vietnam-Era Army Service: Evidence from Australia's Conscription Lotteries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 345-349, May.
    3. Dora L. Costa & Matthew E. Kahn, 2008. "Health, Stress, and Social Networks: Evidence from Union Army Veterans," NBER Working Papers 14053, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Andrew Leigh, 2005. "Deriving Long-Run Inequality Series from Tax Data," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 81(s1), pages 58-70, August.
    5. Kelly Bedard & Olivier Deschênes, 2006. "The Long-Term Impact of Military Service on Health: Evidence from World War II and Korean War Veterans," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 176-194, March.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Patulny, Roger & Siminski, Peter & Mendolia, Silvia, 2015. "The front line of social capital creation – A natural experiment in symbolic interaction," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 125(C), pages 8-18.
    2. Frank Hubers & Dinand Webbink, 2015. "The long-term effects of military conscription on educational attainment and wages," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-16, December.
    3. Simon Ville & Peter Siminski, 2011. "A Fair And Equitable Method Of Recruitment? Conscription By Ballot Into The Australian Army During The Vietnam War," Australian Economic History Review, Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 51(3), pages 277-296, November.
    4. Peter Siminski & Simon Ville, 2012. "I Was Only Nineteen, 45 Years Ago: What Can we Learn from Australia’s Conscription Lotteries?," Economics Working Papers wp12-06, School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia.
    5. Peter Siminski & Simon Ville & Alexander Paull, 2016. "Does the military turn men into criminals? New evidence from Australia’s conscription lotteries," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 29(1), pages 197-218, January.
    6. Hjalmarsson, Randi & Lindquist, Matthew, 2016. "The Causal Effect of Military Conscription on Crime and the Labor Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 11110, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Peter Siminski & Simon Ville, 2011. "Long-Run Mortality Effects of Vietnam-Era Army Service: Evidence from Australia's Conscription Lotteries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 345-349, May.
    8. Johnston, David W. & Shields, Michael A. & Siminski, Peter, 2016. "Long-term health effects of Vietnam-era military service: A quasi-experiment using Australian conscription lotteries," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 12-26.
    9. Brennan Mange & David C. Phillips, 2016. "Career Interruption and Productivity: Evidence from Major League Baseball during the Vietnam War Era," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(2), pages 159-185.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Vietnam veterans; employment; natural experiment; Australia; conscription;

    JEL classification:

    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • H56 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - National Security and War
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies

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