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Front-loading the Payment of Unemployment Benefits

Listed author(s):
  • Etienne Lalé

    ()

We study the effects of front-loading the payment of unemployment benefits in an equilibrium matching framework with precautionary savings. Front-loading the benefit system trades off fewer means to smooth consumption at long unemployment durations for improved insurance upon job loss. In the United States where jobless spells are typically frequent but short, we find that front-loading the benefit system yields significant welfare gains for new benefit recipients. The gains are lower in the aggregate, but are not completely offset by general equilibrium effects. Comparison with a search effort model shows that the welfare figures are not specific to matching frictions.

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File URL: http://www.efm.bris.ac.uk/economics/working_papers/pdffiles/dp15651.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK in its series Bristol Economics Discussion Papers with number 15/651.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2014
Date of revision: 16 Nov 2015
Handle: RePEc:bri:uobdis:15/651
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  1. Raj Chetty, 2008. "Moral Hazard versus Liquidity and Optimal Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(2), pages 173-234, 04.
  2. Shavell, Steven & Weiss, Laurence, 1979. "The Optimal Payment of Unemployment Insurance Benefits over Time," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1347-1362, December.
  3. Olga Gorbachev, 2011. "Did Household Consumption Become More Volatile?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 2248-2270, August.
  4. S. Nuray Akin & Brennan Platt, 2012. "Running Out of Time: Limited Unemployment Benefits and Reservation Wages," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 15(2), pages 149-170, April.
  5. Raj Chetty, 2008. "Moral Hazard versus Liquidity and Optimal Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(2), pages 173-234, 04.
  6. Cahuc, Pierre & Lehmann, Etienne, 2000. "Should unemployment benefits decrease with the unemployment spell?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 135-153, July.
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