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Marginal Employment Subsidization: A New Concept and a Reappraisal

  • Andreas Knabe
  • Ronnie Schöb
  • Joachim Weimann

In this paper, we attempt to renew the interest in marginal employment subsidies. Such subsidies are paid only for a firm's additional employment exceeding some reference level and create larger employment stimuli at lower fiscal costs than general wage subsidies for all workers. If the hiring of a new employee also entails subsidizing an incumbent worker (double marginal subsidization), the replacement of regular paid workers by outsourcing employment to newly established firms – a standard critique of marginal employment subsidies – can be avoided. This additional subsidy reduces the incentive to crowd out regular employment and results in even larger employment effects. Applying the subsidy scheme to the low-skill labor market in Germany, we show that employment can be substantially increased without imposing additional fiscal burden.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1707.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1707
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  1. Bishop, John & Haveman, Robert, 1979. "Selective Employment Subsidies: Can Okun's Law be Repealed?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 124-30, May.
  2. Falk, Martin & Koebel, Bertrand M, 2002. " Outsourcing, Imports and Labour Demand," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 104(4), pages 567-86, December.
  3. J. Michael Orszag & Dennis J. Shower, 2000. "The Effectiveness of Employment Vouchers: A Simple Approach," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 1(4), pages 385-419, November.
  4. Hart, Robert A, 1989. "The Employment and Hours Effects of a Marginal Employment Subsidy," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 36(4), pages 385-95, November.
  5. John T. Addison & Lutz Bellmann & Thorsten Schank & Paulino Teixeira, 2005. "The Demand for Labor: An Analysis Using Matched Employer-Employee Data from the German LIAB. Will the High Unskilled Worker Own-Wage Elasticity Please Stand Up?," GEMF Working Papers 2005-13, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
  6. Hans-Werner Sinn & Christian Holzner & Wolfgang Meister & Wolfgang Ochel & Martin Werding, 2002. "Aktivierende Sozialhilfe - Ein Weg zu mehr Beschäftigung und Wachstum," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 55(09), pages 03-52, 05.
  7. Hans-Werner Sinn & Christian Holzner & Wolfgang Meister & Wolfgang Ochel & Martin Werding, 2006. "Aktivierende Sozialhilfe 2006 - das Kombilohn-Modell des ifo Instituts," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 59(02), pages 06-27, 01.
  8. Alfred Boss & Thomas Elendner, 2005. "Incentives to Work: The Case of Germany," Kiel Working Papers 1237, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  9. Orszag, Jonathan Michael & Snower, Dennis J., 2000. "The effectiveness of employment vouchers : a simple approach," Open Access Publications from Kiel Institute for the World Economy 2519, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  10. Assar Lindbeck & Dennis J. Snower, 2001. "Insiders versus Outsiders," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 165-188, Winter.
  11. Orszag, J. Michael & Snower, Dennis J., 2003. "Designing employment subsidies," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(5), pages 557-572, October.
  12. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, . "Unemployment, Growth and Taxation in Industrial Countries," Working Papers 122, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  13. Oswald, Andrew J, 1984. "Three Theorems on Inflation Taxes and Marginal Employment Subsidies," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 94(375), pages 599-611, September.
  14. George F. Kopits, 1978. "Wage Subsidies and Employment: An Analysis of the French Experience (Les subventions des salaires et le niveau d'emploi: analyze de l'expérience française) (Subsidios salariales y el nivel de empleo," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 25(3), pages 494-527, September.
  15. Alexander Hijzen & Holger Görg & Robert C. Hine, 2004. "International Outsourcing and the Skill Structure of Labour Demand in the United Kingdom," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 437, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  16. Snower, Dennis J., 1994. "Converting Unemployment Benefits into Employment Subsidies," CEPR Discussion Papers 930, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Pierre Cahuc & André Zylberberg, 2004. "Labor Economics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026203316x, June.
  18. Whitley, J D & Wilson, R A, 1983. "The Macroeconomic Merits of a Marginal Employment Subsidy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 93(372), pages 862-80, December.
  19. Ronnie Schöb und Joachim Weimann & Joachim Weimann, 2003. "Kombilohn: Die Magdeburger Alternative," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 4(1), pages 1-17, 02.
  20. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1992. "Workfare versus Welfare Incentive Arguments for Work Requirements in Poverty-Alleviation Programs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 249-61, March.
  21. Layard, P R G & Nickell, S J, 1980. "The Case for Subsidising Extra Jobs," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(357), pages 51-73, March.
  22. Johnson, George & Stafford, Frank, 1999. "The labor market implications of international trade," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 34, pages 2215-2288 Elsevier.
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