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Optimal Unemployment Benefit Policy and the Firm Productivity Distribution

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  • Tomer Blumkin
  • Leif Danziger
  • Eran Yashiv

Abstract

This paper provides a novel justification for a declining time profile of unemployment benefits that does not rely on moral hazard or consumption-smoothing considerations. We consider a simple search environment with homogeneous workers and low- and high-productivity firms. By introducing a declining time profile of benefits, the government can affect the equilibrium wage profile in a manner that enhances the sorting of workers across low- and high-productivity firms. We demonstrate that optimal government policy depends on the dispersion and skewness of the firms’ productivity distribution.

Suggested Citation

  • Tomer Blumkin & Leif Danziger & Eran Yashiv, 2016. "Optimal Unemployment Benefit Policy and the Firm Productivity Distribution," CESifo Working Paper Series 5931, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_5931
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    unemployment benefit policy; declining unemployment benefits; productivity distribution; skewness; dispersion;

    JEL classification:

    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings

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