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Absence from Work of the Self-Employed: A Comparison with Paid Employees

  • Lechmann, Daniel S. J.

    ()

    (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)

  • Schnabel, Claus

    ()

    (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)

Utilising a large representative data set for Germany, this study contrasts absenteeism of self-employed individuals and paid employees. We find that absence from work is clearly less prevalent among the self-employed than among paid employees. Only to a small extent, this difference can be traced back to differences in health status and job satisfaction. Furthermore, the gap in absenteeism is apparently not driven by different behaviour in case of sickness as we find no difference in the prevalence of presenteeism between the two groups. We suspect that different behaviour in case of healthiness plays a role, highlighting potential shirking and moral hazard problems in paid employment.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7756.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Kyklos, 2014, 67 (3), 368-390
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7756
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  1. Spierdijk, Laura & van Lomwel, Gijsbert & Peppelman, Wilko, 2009. "The determinants of sick leave durations of Dutch self-employed," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 1185-1196, December.
  2. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521728355 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Brown, Sarah & Sessions, John G, 1996. " The Economics of Absence: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(1), pages 23-53, March.
  4. Miriam Beblo & Renate Ortlieb, 2012. "Absent from Work? The Impact of Household and Work Conditions in Germany," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(1), pages 73-97, January.
  5. Puhani, Patrick A. & Sonderhof, Katja, 2009. "The Effects of a Sick Pay Reform on Absence and on Health-Related Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 4607, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Nicolas R. Ziebarth & Martin Karlsson, 2009. "The Effects of Expanding the Generosity of the Statutory Sickness Insurance System," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 245, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  7. Askildsen, Jan Erik & Bratberg, Espen & Nilsen, Øivind Anti, 2002. "Unemployment, labour force composition and sickness absence. A panel data study," Working Papers in Economics 05/02, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
  8. Ilias Livanos & Alexandros Zangelidis, 2013. "Unemployment, Labor Market Flexibility, and Absenteeism: A Pan-European Study," Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 492-515, 04.
  9. Georges Dionne & Benoit Dostie, 2005. "New Evidence on the Determinants of Absenteeism Using Linked Employer-Employee Data," Cahiers de recherche 0521, CIRPEE.
  10. Engström, Per & Holmlund, Bertil, 2007. "Worker Absenteeism in Search Equilibrium," IZA Discussion Papers 2947, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Böckerman, Petri & Ilmakunnas, Pekka, 2008. "Interaction of working conditions, job satisfaction, and sickness absences: Evidence from a representative sample of employees," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 67(4), pages 520-528, August.
  12. Audas, Rick & Goddard, John, 2001. "Absenteeism, seasonality, and the business cycle," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 405-419.
  13. Barmby, Tim & Sessions, John G & Treble, John G, 1994. " Absenteeism, Efficiency Wages and Shirking," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 96(4), pages 561-66.
  14. Johansson, Per & Palme, Marten, 1996. "Do economic incentives affect work absence? Empirical evidence using Swedish micro data," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 195-218, February.
  15. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521899604 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Bruno S. Frey & Matthias Benz, . "Being Independent is a Great Thing: Subjective Evaluations of Self-Employment and Hierarchy," IEW - Working Papers 135, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  17. Christian Pfeifer, 2013. "Cyclical Absenteeism Among Private Sector, Public Sector And Self‐Employed Workers," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(3), pages 366-370, 03.
  18. Leigh, J. Paul, 1991. "Employee and job attributes as predictors of absenteeism in a national sample of workers: The importance of health and dangerous working conditions," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 127-137, January.
  19. John S. Heywood & Uwe Jirjahn, 2004. "Teams, Teamwork and Absence," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(4), pages 765-782, December.
  20. Rigmar Osterkamp & Oliver Röhn, 2007. "Being on Sick Leave: Possible Explanations for Differences of Sick-leave Days Across Countries," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 53(1), pages 97-114, March.
  21. Monojit Chatterji & Colin J. Tilley, 2002. "Sickness, absenteeism, presenteeism, and sick pay," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(4), pages 669-687, October.
  22. Allen, Steven G, 1981. "An Empirical Model of Work Attendance," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 77-87, February.
  23. Lusine Lusinyan & Leo Bonato, 2007. "Work Absence in Europe," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 54(3), pages 475-538, July.
  24. Andreas Million & Regina T. Riphahn & Achim Wambach, 2003. "Incentive effects in the demand for health care: a bivariate panel count data estimation," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(4), pages 387-405.
  25. Blanchflower, D.G. & Oswald, A., 1991. "What Makes an Entrepreneur?," Economics Series Working Papers 99125, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
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