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"Marginal Employment": Stepping Stone or Dead End? Evaluating the German Experience

  • Ronny Freier
  • Viktor Steiner
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    "Marginal Employment", i.e. employment at low working hours and earnings not covered by social security, has been gaining importance in the German economy over the past decade. Using a large newly available panel data set and statistical matching techniques, we analyse the effects of marginal employment on future individual outcome variables such as unemployment, regular employment and earnings. In addition to average treatment effects, we calculate dynamic and cumulative treatment effects accounting for total time spent in various labor market states and related earnings over a period of three years. We find that marginal employment (i) does not affect time spent in regular employment within a three-years' observation period, (ii) reduces future unemployment, (iii) slightly increases cumulated future earnings, on average, and (iv) is associated with a small negative cumulative earnings effect for older workers in west Germany.

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    File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.76189.de/dp744.pdf
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    Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 744.

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    Length: 27 p.
    Date of creation: 2007
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp744
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    1. Marco Caliendo & Sabine Kopeinig, 2008. "Some Practical Guidance For The Implementation Of Propensity Score Matching," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(1), pages 31-72, 02.
    2. René Böheim & Andrea Weber, 2006. "The effects of marginal employment on subsequent labour market outcomes," Economics working papers 2006-12, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
    3. Sianesi, Barbara, 2001. "An evaluation of the active labour market programmes in Sweden," Working Paper Series 2001:5, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    4. Haan, Peter & Steiner, Viktor, 2006. "Making Work Pay for the Elderly Unemployed: Evaluating Alternative Policy Reforms for Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 2424, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Viktor Steiner & Katharina Wrohlich, 2004. "Work Incentives and Labor Supply Effects of the 'Mini-Jobs Reform' in Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 438, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    6. Ichino, Andrea & Mealli, Fabrizia & Nannicini, Tommaso, 2006. "From Temporary Help Jobs to Permanent Employment: What Can We Learn from Matching Estimators and their Sensitivity?," IZA Discussion Papers 2149, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. James Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 1998. "Characterizing Selection Bias Using Experimental Data," NBER Working Papers 6699, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Lechner, Michael, 1999. "Earnings and Employment Effects of Continuous Off-the-Job Training in East Germany after Unification," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 17(1), pages 74-90, January.
    9. Ronny Freier & Viktor Steiner, 2007. "'Marginal Employment' and the Demand for Heterogenous Labour: Empirical Evidence from a Multi-factor Labour Demand Model for Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 662, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    10. Michael Fertig & Jochen Kluve, 2006. "Alternative Beschäftigungsformen in Deutschland: Effekte der Neuregelung von Zeitarbeit, Minijobs und Midijobs," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 75(3), pages 97-117.
    11. Jürgen Schupp & Elisabeth Birkner, 2004. "Kleine Beschäftigungsverhältnisse: kein Jobwunder: dauerhafter Rückgang von Zweitbeschäftigungen?," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 71(34), pages 487-497.
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