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The long-term effects of in-work benefits in a life-cycle model for policy evaluation

Author

Listed:
  • Richard Blundell

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and IFS and UCL)

  • Monica Costa Dias

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Institute for Fiscal Studies)

  • Costas Meghir

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Yale University)

  • Jonathan Shaw

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Turing Institute)

Abstract

This paper presents a life-cycle model of woman's labour supply, human capital formation and savings for the evaluation of welfare-to-work and tax policies. Women's decisions are formalised in a dynamic and uncertain environment. The model includes a detailed characterisation of the tax system and of the dynamics of family formation while explicitly considering the determinants of employment and education decisions: (i ) contemporaneous incentives to work, (ii ) future consequences for employment through human capital accumulation and (iii) anticipatory effects on the value of employment and education. The choice of parameters follows a careful calibration procedure, based of a large sample of data moments from the British population during the nineties using BHPS data. Many important features established in the empirical literature are reproduced in the simulation exercises, including the employment effects of the WFTC reform in the UK. The model is used to gain further insight into the responses to two recent policy changes, the October 1999 WFTC and the April 2003 WTC/CTC reforms. We find small but non-negligible anticipation effects on employment and education.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Blundell & Monica Costa Dias & Costas Meghir & Jonathan Shaw, 2011. "The long-term effects of in-work benefits in a life-cycle model for policy evaluation," CeMMAP working papers CWP07/11, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:cemmap:07/11
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jeffrey Grogger & LynnA. Karoly, 2009. "The Effects of Work-Conditioned Transfers on Marriage and Child Well-Being: A Review," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(535), pages 15-37, February.
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    3. Heckman, James J, 1978. "Dummy Endogenous Variables in a Simultaneous Equation System," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(4), pages 931-959, July.
    4. Emmanuel Saez, 2002. "Optimal Income Transfer Programs: Intensive versus Extensive Labor Supply Responses," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(3), pages 1039-1073.
    5. Marco Francesconi & Wilbert van der Klaauw, 2007. "The Socioeconomic Consequences of "In-Work" Benefit Reform for British Lone Mothers," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(1).
    6. Paul Gregg & Susan Harkness & Sarah Smith, 2009. "Welfare Reform and Lone Parents in the UK," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(535), pages 38-65, February.
    7. Card, David & Robins, Philip K., 2005. "How important are "entry effects" in financial incentive programs for welfare recipients? Experimental evidence from the Self-Sufficiency Project," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 113-139.
    8. Brewer, Mike & Duncan, Alan & Shephard, Andrew & Suarez, Maria Jose, 2006. "Did working families' tax credit work? The impact of in-work support on labour supply in Great Britain," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(6), pages 699-720, December.
    9. Marco Francesconi & Helmut Rainer & Wilbert vanderKlaauw, 2009. "The Effects of In-Work Benefit Reform in Britain on Couples: Theory and Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(535), pages 66-100, February.
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    11. Jonathan Shaw, 2011. "FORTAX: UK tax and benefit system documentation," IFS Working Papers W11/08, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    12. Susumu Imai & Michael P. Keane, 2004. "Intertemporal Labor Supply and Human Capital Accumulation," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(2), pages 601-641, May.
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    14. Luigi Pistaferri, 2003. "Anticipated and Unanticipated Wage Changes, Wage Risk, and Intertemporal Labor Supply," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(3), pages 729-754, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Mike Brewer & Monica Costa Dias & Jonathan Shaw, 2013. "How taxes and welfare distort work incentives: static lifecycle and dynamic perspectives," IFS Working Papers W13/01, Institute for Fiscal Studies.

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