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Optimal Unemployment Insurance for Older Workers

  • Hairault, Jean-Olivier

    ()

    (University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne)

  • Langot, François

    ()

    (University of Le Mans)

  • Ménard, Sébastien

    ()

    (GAINS, Université du Maine)

  • Sopraseuth, Thepthida

    ()

    (University of Cergy-Pontoise)

This paper shows that optimal unemployment insurance contracts are age-dependent. Older workers have only a few years left on the labor market prior to retirement. This short horizon implies a more digressive replacement ratio. However, there is a sufficiently short distance to retirement for which flat unemployment benefits can be the optimal contract as the nearly retired unemployed workers rationally expect never to suffer from the punishment. This is why imposing a tax on the future job is particularly efficient in the context of older workers because the agency can now reward the job search by present employment subsidies. Moreover, we propose adopting a global approach to unemployment insurance by determining an optimal contract that integrates unemployment insurance and retirement pension systems.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4071.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Public Economics, 2012, 96 (5-6), 509-519
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4071
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  1. Christopher Phelan & Robert M Townsend, 2010. "Computing Multi-Period, Information Constrained Optima," Levine's Working Paper Archive 117, David K. Levine.
  2. Adrian Masters & Melvyn Coles, 2004. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance in a Matching Equilibrium," Discussion Papers 04-12, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
  3. Hellerstein, Judith K & Neumark, David & Troske, Kenneth R, 1999. "Wages, Productivity, and Worker Characteristics: Evidence from Plant-Level Production Functions and Wage Equations," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(3), pages 409-46, July.
  4. CREMER, Helmuth & LOZACHMEUR, Jean-Marie & PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "Social security, retirement age and optimal income taxation," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1722, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
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  7. Lars Ljungqvist & Thomas J. Sargent, 2008. "Two Questions about European Unemployment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(1), pages 1-29, 01.
  8. Gruber, Jonathan, 1997. "The Consumption Smoothing Benefits of Unemployment Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 192-205, March.
  9. Jean-Olivier Hairault & François Langot & Thepthida Sopraseuth, 2010. "Distance to Retirement and The Job Search of Older Workers: The Case For Delaying Retirement Age," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00517107, HAL.
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  11. Chéron, Arnaud & Hairault, Jean-Olivier & Langot, François, 2008. "Age-Dependent Employment Protection," IZA Discussion Papers 3851, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Ludo Visschers & Irina Telyukova & Guido Menzio, 2011. "Directed search over the life cycle," 2011 Meeting Papers 1360, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Nicola Pavoni, 2009. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance, With Human Capital Depreciation, And Duration Dependence," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(2), pages 323-362, 05.
  14. Joseph Stiglitz & Jungyoll Yun, 2002. "Integration of Unemployment Insurance with Retirement Insurance," NBER Working Papers 9199, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Fredriksson, Peter & Holmlund, Bertil, 1998. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance in Search Equilibrium," Working Paper Series 1998:2, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  16. Hagedorn, Marcus & Kaul, Ashok & Mennel, Tim, 2002. "An adverse selection model of optimal unemployment insurance," ZEI Working Papers B 30-2002, University of Bonn, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies.
  17. Nicola Pavoni & Giovanni L. Violante, 2005. "Optimal welfare-to-work programs," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 143, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  18. Blundell, Richard & Ham, John & Meghir, Costas, 1998. "Unemployment, discouraged workers and female labour supply," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 103-131, June.
  19. Hugo A. Hopenhayn & Juan Pablo Nicolini, 2009. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance and Employment History," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 1049-1070.
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  21. Seater, John J., 1977. "A unified model of consumption, labor supply, and job search," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 349-372, April.
  22. Shavell, Steven & Weiss, Laurence, 1979. "The Optimal Payment of Unemployment Insurance Benefits over Time," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1347-62, December.
  23. Anonymous, 1994. "Research Updates," Journal of Food Distribution Research, Food Distribution Research Society, vol. 25(1), February.
  24. Cahuc, Pierre & Lehmann, Etienne, 2000. "Should unemployment benefits decrease with the unemployment spell?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 135-153, July.
  25. Gruber, Jonathan & Wise, David, 1998. "Social Security and Retirement: An International Comparison," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 158-63, May.
  26. Jean-Olivier Hairault & Francois Langot & Thepthida Sopraseuth, 2010. "Distance to Retirement and Older Workers' Employment: The Case for Delaying the Retirement Age," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 8(5), pages 1034-1076, 09.
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