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Undeclared Work And Wage Inequality

  • Leandro Elia

    ()

  • Edoardo Di Porto

    ()

    (Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica, Università della Calabria)

In this paper we study how undeclared work affects the wages of undeclared and declared workers and in particular the declared wage inequality. Using individual data on Italy in the years 2000-2004, we compute a cross and own labor demand elasticity for undeclared and declared work. We provide an identification strategy relying on Italian amnesty tax laws in 2002. Such laws have changed the shape of Italian undeclared sector causing a quick emersion of undeclared workers. Our results based on a set of 2SLS regressions suggest that undeclared work: 1) decreases declared wages, 2) adversely affects undeclared wages and 3) raises wage inequality in the declared sector. Undeclared work competes more with least skilled jobs, while do not affect high skilled jobs. We found complementarity between undeclared workers and medium skills jobs. As a consequence reducing undeclared work decreases wage inequality as well as it decreases the earnings in medium skill sectors. This result suggests that undertaking reducing undeclared labor-policy might encounter resistance because of welfare loss of the medium class of workers.

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File URL: http://www.ecostat.unical.it/RePEc/WorkingPapers/WP08_2011.pdf
File Function: First version, 2011-08
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Paper provided by Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica) in its series Working Papers with number 201108.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:clb:wpaper:201108
Contact details of provider: Postal: Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza, Ponte Pietro Bucci, Cubo 0/C, I-87036 Arcavacata di Rende, CS, Italy
Phone: +39 0984 492413
Fax: +39 0984 492421
Web page: http://www.unical.it/portale/strutture/dipartimenti_240/disesf/

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  1. Rita Cappariello & Roberta Zizza, 2010. "Dropping the Books and Working Off the Books," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 24(2), pages 139-162, 06.
  2. Friedrich Schneider, 2000. "The Increase of the Size of the Shadow Economy of 18 OECD Countries: Some Preliminary Explanations," CESifo Working Paper Series 306, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Edoardo Di Porto, 2011. "Undeclared Work, Employer Tax Compliance, and Audits," Public Finance Review, , vol. 39(1), pages 75-102, January.
  4. Lemieux, Thomas & Fortin, Bernard & Frechette, Pierre, 1994. "The Effect of Taxes on Labor Supply in the Underground Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 231-54, March.
  5. Daron Acemoglu & David H. Autor & David Lyle, 2002. "Women, War and Wages: The Effect of Female Labor Supply on the Wage Structure at Mid-Century," NBER Working Papers 9013, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Boeri, Tito & Garibaldi, Pietro, 2006. "Shadow Sorting," CEPR Discussion Papers 5487, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    • Tito Boeri & Pietro Garibaldi, 2005. "Shadow Sorting," NBER Chapters, in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2005, pages 125-163 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Boeri, Tito & Garibaldi, Pietro, 2002. "Shadow Activity and Unemployment in a Depressed Labour Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 3433, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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