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Enforcement of regulation, informal labor and firm performance

  • Rita Almeida
  • Pedro Carneiro

    ()

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London)

This paper investigates how enforcement of labor regulation affects the firm's use of informal labor and firm performance. Using firm level data on informal employment and firm performance, and administrative data on enforcement of regulation at the city level, we show that in areas where law enforcement is stricter firms employ a smaller amount of informal employment. Furthermore, by reducing the firm's access to unregulated labor, stricter enforcement is also associated with lower labor productivity. We control for different regional and firm characteristics, and we instrument enforcement with a measure of the access of labor inspectors to firms. Taken together, our findings suggest that increased access to labor flexibility significantly improves firm performance.

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File URL: http://cemmap.ifs.org.uk/wps/cwp0602.pdf
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Paper provided by Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies in its series CeMMAP working papers with number CWP02/06.

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Length: 36 pp.
Date of creation: Jan 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ifs:cemmap:02/06
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  1. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2002. "Can Labour Regulation Hinder Economic Performance? Evidence from India," STICERD - Development Economics Papers - From 2008 this series has been superseded by Economic Organisation and Public Policy Discussion Papers 33, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  2. Maloney, William F., 2004. "Informality Revisited," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1159-1178, July.
  3. Simeon Djankov & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer & Juan Botero, 2003. "The Regulation of Labor," NBER Working Papers 9756, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  5. Nickell, Stephen & Layard, Richard, 1999. "Labor market institutions and economic performance," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 46, pages 3029-3084 Elsevier.
  6. Loayza, Norman A., 1997. "The economics of the informal sector : a simple model and some empirical evidence from Latin America," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1727, The World Bank.
  7. Ricardo Paes de Barros & Carlos Henrique Corseuil, 2001. "The Impact of Regulations on Brazilian Labor Market Performance," Research Department Publications 3124, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  8. Steven D. Levitt, 1998. "Juvenile Crime and Punishment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1156-1185, December.
  9. Svensson, Jakob, 2000. "Who must pay bribes and how much? Evidence from a cross-section of firms," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2486, The World Bank.
  10. Loayza, Norman V. & Oviedo, Ana Maria & Serven, Luis, 2005. "The impact of regulation on growth and informality - cross-country evidence," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3623, The World Bank.
  11. Kugler, Adriana D. & Kugler, Maurice, 2003. "The Labour Market Effects of Payroll Taxes in a Middle-Income Country: Evidence from Colombia," CEPR Discussion Papers 4046, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Thomas J. Holmes, 1998. "The Effect of State Policies on the Location of Manufacturing: Evidence from State Borders," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(4), pages 667-705, August.
  17. James Heckman & Carmen Pages, 2003. "Law and Employment: Lessons from Latin America and the Caribbean," NBER Working Papers 10129, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Lazear, Edward P, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726, August.
  19. Scarpetta, Stefano & Tressel, Thierry, 2004. "Boosting productivity via innovation and adoption of new technologies : any role for labor market institutions?," Social Protection Discussion Papers 29144, The World Bank.
  20. Ricardo Paes de Barros & Carlos Henrique Corseuil, 2001. "The Impact of Regulations on Brazilian Labor Market Performance," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 43198, Inter-American Development Bank.
  21. Jonathan Gruber, 1995. "The Incidence of Payroll Taxation: Evidence from Chile," NBER Working Papers 5053, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  23. R. Hirschowitz, 1989. "The Other Path: The Invisible Revolution in the Third World," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 57(4), pages 266-272, December.
  24. Olivier Blanchard & Justin Wolfers, 1999. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Stephen Nickell, 1997. "Unemployment and Labor Market Rigidities: Europe versus North America," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 55-74, Summer.
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