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How Viable Are Unemployment Insurance Savings Accounts: Simulation Results for Slovenia

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  • Vodopivec, Milan

    () (University of Primorska)

Abstract

By simulating the working of the unemployment insurance savings accounts (UISAs) in Slovenia using a methodology similar to Feldstein and Altman (1998), the paper examines two questions: how viable is this system as an alternative to traditional unemployment insurance (UI) system, and how the redistribution of income changes if the UI system is replaced by UISAs. The simulations are performed on a representative sample of labor force participants, for which lifetime labor market histories are generated from administrative panel data. Simulations show that the UISA system is a viable alternative to a modest UI system, but that its viability is jeopardized under generous benefits. Under the modest regime (here identified with a post-1998 period, the period after the UI reform which strongly reduced the maximum potential duration of benefit, for most workers even by half) our calculations show that only one quarter of workers end their working life with negative cumulative balance and 43 percent ever experience a negative UISA balance; in contrast, under the generous regime (here identified with the pre-1998-reform period), 49 percent of workers end their working life with negative cumulative balance and 66 percent ever experience a negative balance. Moreover, under the modest benefit regime workers are better able to recover positive UISA balance. The simulations also show that the level of redistribution under the UISAs lags substantially behind the UI system, even though the version of the UISAs studied permits borrowing and hence allows for redistribution.

Suggested Citation

  • Vodopivec, Milan, 2008. "How Viable Are Unemployment Insurance Savings Accounts: Simulation Results for Slovenia," IZA Discussion Papers 3438, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3438
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Milan Vodopivec & Peter F. Orazem, 2000. "Male-female differences in labor market outcomes during the early transition to market: The cases of Estonia and Slovenia," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 13(2), pages 283-303.
    2. Carmen Pagés-Serra & James J. Heckman, 2000. "The Cost of Job Security Regulation: Evidence from Latin American Labor Markets," Research Department Publications 4227, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    3. Milan Vodopivec & Andreas Wörgötter & Dhushyanth Raju, 2005. "Unemployment Benefit Systems in Central and Eastern Europe: A Review of the 1990s1," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 47(4), pages 615-651, December.
    4. Vodopivec, Milan & Raju, Dhushyanth, 2002. "Income support systems for the unemployed : issues and options," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 25529, The World Bank.
    5. Haltiwanger, John C. & Vodopivec, Milan, 2002. "Gross worker and job flows in a transition economy: an analysis of Estonia," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(5), pages 601-630, November.
    6. Martin Feldstein & Daniel Altman, 2007. "Unemployment Insurance Savings Accounts," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 21, pages 35-64 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Jan C. van Ours & Milan Vodopivec, 2006. "How Shortening the Potential Duration of Unemployment Benefits Affects the Duration of Unemployment: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(2), pages 351-378, April.
    8. Bruce D. Meyer, 1995. "Lessons from the U.S. Unemployment Insurance Experiments," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(1), pages 91-131, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Robalino, David & Vodopivec, Milan & Bodor, Andras, 2009. "Savings for unemployment in good or bad times : options for developing countries," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 50320, The World Bank.
    2. Hartley, Gonzalo Reyes & van Ours, Jan C. & Vodopivec, Milan, 2011. "Incentive effects of unemployment insurance savings accounts: Evidence from Chile," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 798-809.
    3. Milan Vodopivec, 2013. "Introducing unemployment insurance to developing countries," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 2(1), pages 1-23, December.
    4. Haroon Bhorat & David Tseng, 2012. "The Newly Unemployed and the UIF Take-up Rate in the South African Labour Market," Working Papers 12147, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    unemployment insurance savings accounts; unemployment insurance;

    JEL classification:

    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models

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