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Income, Uncertainty and the Probability of Self-Employment

Author

Listed:
  • Friedhelm PFEIFFER

    (Universität Mannheim)

  • Winfried POHLMEIER

    (Universität Mannheim)

Abstract

This paper aims at investigating the determinants of self- employment within a structural model of discrete choice under uncertainty. The basic idea of our approach centres around Knight's (1921) famous view of entrepreneurs receiving risk-adjusted income that has to exceed the income of employees because of the greater variance of the income stream. Unlike previous econometric approaches, which use reduced form specifications that are more or less based on ad-hoc reasoning, we derive a choice equation of which the parameters have a clear interpretation in terms of the parameters of the underlying von Neumann- Morgenstern utility function. The specification allows to identify how the difference in income risk between wage-employment and self- employment enters the choice equation without approximating the risk difference via a reduced form specification. The model is estimated using a random effects panel probit estimator with unrestricted autocorrelation structure. Estimates are based on a balanced panel of 1,926 working men selected from the West German Socio-Economic Panel 1984 to 1989.

Suggested Citation

  • Friedhelm PFEIFFER & Winfried POHLMEIER, 1992. "Income, Uncertainty and the Probability of Self-Employment," Discussion Papers (REL - Recherches Economiques de Louvain) 1992032, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  • Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvre:1992032
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    File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40723995
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Frank M. Fossen, 2007. "Risky Earnings, Taxation and Entrepreneurial Choice: A Microeconometric Model for Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 705, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    2. repec:iab:iabzaf:v:38:i:2/3:p:325-340 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Das, Marcel & van Soest, Arthur, 1999. "A panel data model for subjective information on household income growth," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 409-426, December.
    4. Lechner, Michael, 1993. "The dynamics of self-employment in East Germany: an empirical analysis using panel data and allowing for state dependence and endogenous attrition," ZEW Discussion Papers 93-24, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    5. Pfeiffer, Friedhelm & Reize, Frank, 2000. "Business start-ups by the unemployed -- an econometric analysis based on firm data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 629-663, September.
    6. repec:iab:iabmit:v:32:i:3:p:300-330 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Daniela Glocker & Viktor Steiner, 2007. "Self-Employment - a Way to End Unemployment?: Empirical Evidence from German Pseudo-Panel Data," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 661, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    8. Das, J.W.M., 1998. "On income expectations and other subjective data : A micro-econometric analysis," Other publications TiSEM 5135bcf3-91f8-4a87-a4cf-8, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    9. repec:eee:juecon:v:99:y:2017:i:c:p:120-135 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Pfeiffer, Friedhelm, 2005. "Existenzgründungen: Ein Weg zur Beschäftigungsförderung? (Firm foundation * a way to enhance employment?)," Zeitschrift für ArbeitsmarktForschung - Journal for Labour Market Research, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany], vol. 38(2/3), pages 325-340.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • C35 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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