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Carrot and Stick: How Reemployment Bonuses and Benefit Sanctions Affect Job Finding Rates

  • van der Klaauw, Bas

    ()

    (VU University Amsterdam)

  • van Ours, Jan C.

    ()

    (Tilburg University)

To increase their transition from welfare to work, benefit recipients in the municipality of Rotterdam were exposed to various financial incentives, including both carrots to sticks. Once their benefit spell exceeded one year, welfare recipients were entitled to a reemployment bonus if they found a job that lasted at least six months. However, they could also be punished for noncompliance with eligibility requirements and face a sanction, i.e. a temporary reducing of their benefits. In this paper we investigate how benefit sanctions and reemployment bonuses affect job finding rates of welfare recipients. We find that benefit sanctions were effective in bringing unemployed from welfare to work more quickly while reemployment bonuses were not.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5055.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Applied Econometrics, 2013, 28 (2), 275–296
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5055
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  1. Bernhard Boockmann & Stephan Thomsen & Thomas Walter, 2009. "Intensifying the Use of Benefit Sanctions – An Effective Tool to Shorten Welfare Receipt and Speed up Transitions to Employment?," IAW Discussion Papers 56, Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung (IAW).
  2. Bijwaard, Govert E. & Ridder, Geert, 2005. "Correcting for selective compliance in a re-employment bonus experiment," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 77-111.
  3. Yannis Bilias, 2000. "Sequential testing of duration data: the case of the Pennsylvania 'reemployment bonus' experiment," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(6), pages 575-594.
  4. Hanming Fang & Dan Silverman, 2004. "Time-inconsistency and Welfare Program Participation: Evidence from the NLSY," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1465, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  5. Stefano DellaVigna & M. Daniele Paserman, 2004. "Job Search and Impatience," NBER Working Papers 10837, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Paul T. Decker & Christopher J. L'Leary, 1995. "Evaluating Pooled Evidence from the Reemployment Bonus Experiments," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(3), pages 534-550.
  7. Lalive, Rafael & van Ours, Jan C & Zweimüller, Josef, 2002. "The Effect of Benefit Sanctions on the Duration of Unemployment," CEPR Discussion Papers 3311, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. David Card & Jochen Kluve & Andrea Weber, 2009. "Active Labor Market Policy Evaluations: A Meta-analysis," CESifo Working Paper Series 2570, CESifo Group Munich.
  9. Jaap H. Abbring & Gerard J. Berg & Jan C. Ours, 2005. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance Sanctions on the Transition Rate from Unemployment to Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(505), pages 602-630, 07.
  10. Kluve, Jochen, 2010. "The effectiveness of European active labor market programs," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 904-918, December.
  11. Woodbury, Stephen A & Spiegelman, Robert G, 1987. "Bonuses to Workers and Employers to Reduce Unemployment: Randomized Trials in Illinois," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 513-30, September.
  12. Paul T. Decker, 1994. "The Impact of Reemployment Bonuses on Insured Unemployment in the New Jersey and Illinois Reemployment Bonus Experiments," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(3), pages 718-741.
  13. van den Berg, Gerard J & van der Klaauw, Bas & van Ours, Jan C, 2000. "Punitive Sanctions and the Transition Rate From Welfare to Work," CEPR Discussion Papers 2447, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. van den Berg, Gerard J. & Vikström, Johan, 2009. "Monitoring Job Offer Decisions, Punishments, Exit to Work, and Job Quality," IZA Discussion Papers 4325, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  17. repec:mpr:mprres:1978 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. 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.
  19. Jensen, Peter & Rosholm, Michael & Svarer, Michael, 2003. "The response of youth unemployment to benefits, incentives, and sanctions," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 301-316, June.
  20. Arni, Patrick & Lalive, Rafael & van Ours, Jan C., 2009. "How effective are unemployment benefit sanctions? Looking beyond unemployment exit," Working Paper Series 2009:22, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  21. Anderson, Patricia M, 1992. "Time-Varying Effects of Recall Expectation, a Reemployment Bonus, and Job Counseling on Unemployment Durations," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(1), pages 99-115, January.
  22. Jaap H. Abbring & Gerard J. van den Berg, 2003. "The Nonparametric Identification of Treatment Effects in Duration Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(5), pages 1491-1517, 09.
  23. Gerard van den Berg & Antoine Bozio & Monica Costa Dias, 2013. "Policy discontinuity and duration outcomes," IFS Working Papers W13/27, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  24. M. Daniele Paserman, 2004. "Job Search and Hyperbolic Discounting: Structural Estimation and Policy Evaluation," 2004 Meeting Papers 99, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  25. Christopher J. O'Leary & Robert G. Spiegelman & Kenneth J. Kline, 1995. "Do bonus offers shorten unemployment insurance spells? results from the washington experiment," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(2), pages 245-269.
  26. Michael Svarer, 2007. "The Effect of Sanctions on the Job Finding Rate: Evidence from Denmark," Economics Working Papers 2007-10, School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus.
  27. Jochen Kluve & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2002. "Can training and employment subsidies combat European unemployment?," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 17(35), pages 409-448, October.
  28. McVicar, Duncan, 2008. "Job search monitoring intensity, unemployment exit and job entry: Quasi-experimental evidence from the UK," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(6), pages 1451-1468, December.
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