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Poorer Health – Shorter Hours? Health and Flexibility of Hours of Work

Author

Listed:
  • Geyer, Johannes

    (DIW Berlin)

  • Myck, Michal

    (Centre for Economic Analysis, CenEA)

Abstract

We analyse the role of health in determining the difference between desired and actual hours of work in a sample of German men using the Socio-Economic Panel Data for years 1996-2007. The effects of both self-assessed health and legal disability status are examined. About 60% of employees report working more than they would wish with the mean difference of -3.9 hours/week. We estimate static and dynamic model specifications allowing for auto-regressive nature of the dependent variable and testing for the role of lagged health status. Important differences are found between east and west German Länder. In the west we find statistically significant role of general health measures in determining the disequilibrium. Employees in bad health want to work on average by about 0.4 hour/week less according to the static specification, and by about 1 hour/week less if dynamics of health and of the disequilibrium are taken into account. This is respectively 10% and 25% of the mean difference. We find no effects of legal disability status on the disequilibrium which we interpret as a reflection of stronger legal position of disabled employees. In both east and west we find significant state dependence in the hours disequilibrium.

Suggested Citation

  • Geyer, Johannes & Myck, Michal, 2010. "Poorer Health – Shorter Hours? Health and Flexibility of Hours of Work," IZA Discussion Papers 5169, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5169
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martinez-Granado, Maite, 2005. "Testing labour supply and hours constraints," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 321-343, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Kleibrink, Jan, 2014. "Sick of your Job? – Negative Health Effects from Non-Optimal Employment," Ruhr Economic Papers 514, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    2. David Bell & Steffen Otterbach & Alfonso Sousa-Poza, 2012. "Work Hours Constraints and Health," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 105-106, pages 35-54.
    3. Jan Kleibrink, 2014. "Sick of your Job? – Negative Health Effects from Non-Optimal Employment," Ruhr Economic Papers 0514, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    4. repec:zbw:rwirep:0514 is not listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    hours worked; health; disability; labour market flexibility;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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