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Unemployment Insurance Generosity and Aggregate Employment

Author

Listed:
  • Boone, Christopher

    (Cornell University)

  • Dube, Arindrajit

    (University of Massachusetts Amherst)

  • Goodman, Lucas

    (University of Maryland at College Park)

  • Kaplan, Ethan

    (University of Maryland at College Park)

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of unemployment insurance (UI) on aggregate employment by exploiting cross-state variation in the maximum benefit duration during the Great Recession. Comparing adjacent counties located in neighboring states, we find no statistically significant impact of increasing UI generosity on aggregate employment. Our point estimates are uniformly small in magnitude, and the most precise estimates rule out employment-to-population ratio reductions in excess of 0.32 percentage points from the UI extension. We show that a moderately sized fiscal multiplier can rationalize our findings with the small negative labor supply impact of UI typically found in the literature.

Suggested Citation

  • Boone, Christopher & Dube, Arindrajit & Goodman, Lucas & Kaplan, Ethan, 2016. "Unemployment Insurance Generosity and Aggregate Employment," IZA Discussion Papers 10439, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10439
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    Cited by:

    1. Jia, Ye (George), 2023. "Did the unemployment benefits extension between 2009–2013 deter entrepreneurship in the US? Some evidence and a model of unemployment benefits and entrepreneurship," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 122(C).
    2. Nicolas Petrosky-Nadeau & Robert G. Valletta, 2021. "UI Generosity and Job Acceptance: Effects of the 2020 CARES Act," Working Paper Series 2021-13, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    3. von Buxhoeveden, Mathias, 2019. "Unemployment insurance and wage formation," Working Paper Series 2019:13, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    4. Lechthaler, Wolfgang & Ring, Patrick, 2021. "Labor force participation, job search effort and unemployment insurance in the laboratory," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 189(C), pages 748-778.
    5. Tomaz Cajner & Andrew Figura & Brendan M. Price & David Ratner & Alison E. Weingarden, 2020. "Reconciling Unemployment Claims with Job Losses in the First Months of the COVID-19 Crisis," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2020-055, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    6. Gałecka-Burdziak, Ewa & Góra, Marek & Jessen, Jonas & Jessen, Robin & Kluve, Jochen, 2021. "The effects of shortening potential benefit duration: Evidence from regional cut-offs and a policy reform," Ruhr Economic Papers 911, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    7. David Slichter, 2023. "The employment effects of the minimum wage: A selection ratio approach to measuring treatment effects," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 38(3), pages 334-357, April.
    8. Aiwei Huang, 2021. "To What Extent do Labor Market Outcomes respond to UI Extensions?," Papers 2104.12387, arXiv.org.
    9. Yusuf Mercan & Benjamin Schoefer & Petr SedlÃ¡Ä ek, 2020. "A Congestion Theory of Unemployment Fluctuations," Economics Series Working Papers 927, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    10. Grodzicki, Maciej J. & Możdżeń, Michał, 2021. "Central and Eastern European economies in a Goldilocks age: A model of labor market institutional choice," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 104(C).
    11. Camille Landais & Pascal Michaillat & Emmanuel Saez, 2018. "A Macroeconomic Approach to Optimal Unemployment Insurance: Applications," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 10(2), pages 182-216, May.
    12. Jaimovich, Nir & Ferraro, Domenico & Molinari, Francesca & Young, Cristobal, 2020. "The Safety Net as a Springboard? A General Equilibrium based Policy Evaluation," CEPR Discussion Papers 14786, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. Paternesi Meloni, Walter & Romaniello, Davide & Stirati, Antonella, 2022. "Inflation and the NAIRU: assessing the role of long-term unemployment as a cause of hysteresis," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 113(C).
    14. Steven Dieterle & Otávio Bartalotti & Quentin Brummet, 2020. "Revisiting the Effects of Unemployment Insurance Extensions on Unemployment: A Measurement-Error-Corrected Regression Discontinuity Approach," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 84-114, May.
    15. Andrew Figura & David Ratner, 2017. "How Large were the Effects of Emergency and Extended Benefits on Unemployment during the Great Recession and its Aftermath?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2017-068, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    16. Andreas Hornstein & Marios Karabarbounis & Andre Kurmann & Etienne Lale & Lien Ta, 2023. "Disincentive Effects of Unemployment Insurance Benefits," Working Paper 23-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
    17. Gabriel Chodorow-Reich & Loukas Karabarbounis, 2016. "The Limited Macroeconomic Effects of Unemployment Benefit Extensions," NBER Working Papers 22163, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Lester Lusher & Geoffrey C. Schnorr & Rebecca L.C. Taylor, 2022. "Unemployment Insurance as a Worker Indiscipline Device? Evidence from Scanner Data," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 14(2), pages 285-319, April.
    19. Duha T. Altindag & Bahadіr Dursun & Elif S. Filiz, 2022. "The effect of education on unemployment duration," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 60(1), pages 21-42, January.
    20. Bonander, Carl & Ekman, Mats & Jakobsson, Niklas, 2022. "Vaccination nudges: A study of pre-booked COVID-19 vaccinations in Sweden," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 309(C).
    21. Espín, Antonio M. & Correa, Manuel & Ruiz-Villaverde, Alberto, 2022. "Economics students: Self-selected in preferences and indoctrinated in beliefs," International Review of Economics Education, Elsevier, vol. 39(C).
    22. Patrick J. Conway, 2022. "Unemployment insurance programs and the choice to leave the labor force," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 88(4), pages 1373-1400, April.
    23. Amanda Page-Hoongrajok & Sai Madhurika Mamunuru, 2023. "Approaches to Intermediate Microeconomics," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 49(3), pages 368-390, June.
    24. Francesca Carta & Marta De Philippis, 2021. "The impact of the COVID-19 shock on labour income inequality: evidence from Italy," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 606, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    25. Harry J. Holzer & Glenn Hubbard & Michael R. Strain, 2024. "Did pandemic unemployment benefits increase unemployment? Evidence from early state‐level expirations," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 62(1), pages 24-38, January.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    labor supply; unemployment insurance; fiscal multiplier;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy; Modern Monetary Theory
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles

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