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Saving and Portfolio Allocation Before and After Job Loss

Using administrative panel data from Norway, we investigate the development of household labor income, financial wealth and asset holdings over a nine-year period surrounding job loss. Consistent with a simple theoretical model, the data show precautionary saving and a shift toward safer assets in the years leading up to unemployment, and depletion of savings during unemployment. This suggests that at least some households can foresee and prepare for upcoming unemployment, which indicates that private savings can to some extent serve as a substitute for publicly provided unemployment insurance.

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File URL: http://www.kof.ethz.ch/publications/science/pdf/wp_298.pdf
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Paper provided by KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich in its series KOF Working papers with number 12-298.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kof:wpskof:12-298
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  1. Hans G. Bloemen & Elena G. F. Stancanelli, 2005. "Financial Wealth, Consumption Smoothing and Income Shocks Arising from Job Loss," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 72(3), pages 431-452, 08.
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  4. Thomas Crossley & Hamish Low, 2011. "Borrowing constraints, the cost of precautionary saving and unemployment insurance," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 18(6), pages 658-687, December.
  5. Luigi Guiso & Charles Gottlieb & Andreas Fagereng, 2012. "Asset Market Participation and Portfolio Choice over the Life-Cycle," 2012 Meeting Papers 783, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Raj Chetty, 2005. "A General Formula for the Optimal Level of Social Insurance," NBER Working Papers 11386, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Mari Rege & Kjetil Telle & Mark Votruba, 2009. "The Effect of Plant Downsizing on Disability Pension Utilization," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(4), pages 754-785, 06.
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  10. Baily, Martin Neil, 1978. "Some aspects of optimal unemployment insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 379-402, December.
  11. Melvin Stephens, Jr., 2003. "Job Loss Expectations, Realizations, and Household Consumption Behavior," NBER Working Papers 9508, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio & Terlizzese, Daniele, 1996. "Income Risk, Borrowing Constraints, and Portfolio Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 158-72, March.
  13. Cristina Barceló & Ernesto Villanueva, 2010. "The response of household wealth to the risk of losing the job: evidence from differences in firing costs," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1002, Banco de Espa�a.
  14. Bruce D. Meyer & Wallace K. C. Mok & James X. Sullivan, 2009. "The Under-Reporting of Transfers in Household Surveys: Its Nature and Consequences," Working Papers 0903, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
  15. Christopher D. Carroll & Karen E. Dynan & Spencer D. Krane, 2003. "Unemployment Risk and Precautionary Wealth: Evidence from Households' Balance Sheets," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 586-604, August.
  16. Kristiina Huttunen & Jarle Møen & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2011. "How Destructive Is Creative Destruction? Effects Of Job Loss On Job Mobility, Withdrawal And Income," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 9(5), pages 840-870, October.
  17. Till von Wachter & Jae Song & Joyce Manchester, 2008. "Long-Term Earnings Losses due to Job Separation During the 1982 Recession: An Analysis Using Longitudinal Administrative Data from 1974 to 2004," Discussion Papers 0708-16, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  18. Nicola Fuchs-Schündeln & Matthias Schündeln, 2005. "Precautionary Savings and Self-Selection: Evidence from the German Reunification "Experiment"," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(3), pages 1085-1120, August.
  19. Zvi Bodie & Robert C. Merton & William F. Samuelson, 1992. "Labor Supply Flexibility and Portfolio Choice in a Life-Cycle Model," NBER Working Papers 3954, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  21. Knut Roed & Tao Zhang, 2003. "Does Unemployment Compensation Affect Unemployment Duration?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(484), pages 190-206, January.
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