IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/lue/wpaper/377.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Shortening the potential duration of unemployment benefits and labor market outcomes: Evidence from a natural experiment in Germany

Author

Listed:
  • Inna Petrunyk

    () (Leuphana University Lueneburg, Germany)

  • Christian Pfeifer

    () (Leuphana University Lueneburg, Germany)

Abstract

This paper explores the effects of a major reform of unemployment benefits in Germany on the labor market outcomes of individuals with some health impairment. The reform induced a substantial reduction in the potential duration of regular unemployment benefits for older workers. This work analyzes the reform in a wider framework of institutional interactions, which allows us to distinguish between its intended and unintended effects. Our results provide causal evidence for a significant decrease in the number of days in unemployment benefits and increase in the number of days in employment. However, they also suggest a significant increase in the number of days in unemployment assistance, granted upon exhaustion of unemployment benefits. Transitions to unemployment assistance represent an unintended effect, limiting the success of a policy change that aims to increase labor supply via reductions in the generosity of the unemployment insurance system.

Suggested Citation

  • Inna Petrunyk & Christian Pfeifer, 2018. "Shortening the potential duration of unemployment benefits and labor market outcomes: Evidence from a natural experiment in Germany," Working Paper Series in Economics 377, University of Lüneburg, Institute of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lue:wpaper:377
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.leuphana.de/fileadmin/user_upload/Forschungseinrichtungen/ifvwl/WorkingPapers/lue/pdf/wp_377_Upload.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Rafael Lalive & Jan Van Ours & Josef Zweimuller, 2006. "How Changes in Financial Incentives Affect the Duration of Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(4), pages 1009-1038.
    2. Meyer, Bruce D, 1990. "Unemployment Insurance and Unemployment Spells," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(4), pages 757-782, July.
    3. David Card & Raj Chetty & Andrea Weber, 2007. "The Spike at Benefit Exhaustion: Leaving the Unemployment System or Starting a New Job?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 113-118, May.
    4. Kerwin Kofi Charles, 2003. "The Longitudinal Structure of Earnings Losses among Work-Limited Disabled Workers," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(3).
    5. 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 1347-1362, December.
    6. Dale T. Mortensen, 1977. "Unemployment Insurance and Job Search Decisions," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(4), pages 505-517, July.
    7. Raj Chetty, 2008. "Moral Hazard versus Liquidity and Optimal Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(2), pages 173-234, April.
    8. Card, David & Levine, Phillip B., 2000. "Extended benefits and the duration of UI spells: evidence from the New Jersey extended benefit program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1-2), pages 107-138, October.
    9. Johannes F. Schmieder & Till von Wachter, 2016. "The Effects of Unemployment Insurance Benefits: New Evidence and Interpretation," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 8(1), pages 547-581, October.
    10. Martin Feldstein, 2005. "Rethinking Social Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 1-24, March.
    11. repec:elg:eechap:17847_3 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. repec:bpj:jecome:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:20:n:4 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Pellizzari, Michele, 2006. "Unemployment duration and the interactions between unemployment insurance and social assistance," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(6), pages 773-798, December.
    14. Katz, Lawrence F. & Meyer, Bruce D., 1990. "The impact of the potential duration of unemployment benefits on the duration of unemployment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 45-72, February.
    15. Arash Nekoei & Andrea Weber, 2017. "Does Extending Unemployment Benefits Improve Job Quality?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(2), pages 527-561, February.
    16. Rafael Lalive, 2007. "Unemployment Benefits, Unemployment Duration, and Post-Unemployment Jobs: A Regression Discontinuity Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 108-112, May.
    17. Marco Caliendo & Konstantinos Tatsiramos & Arne Uhlendorff, 2013. "Benefit Duration, Unemployment Duration And Job Match Quality: A Regression‐Discontinuity Approach," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 28(4), pages 604-627, June.
    18. Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 2003. "Benefit duration and unemployment entry: A quasi-experiment in Austria," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 259-273, April.
    19. Moffitt, Robert & Nicholson, Walter, 1982. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance on Unemployment: The Case of Federal Supplemental Benefits," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(1), pages 1-11, February.
    20. Hunt, Jennifer, 1995. "The Effect of Unemployment Compensation on Unemployment Duration in Germany," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(1), pages 88-120, January.
    21. Michael Hurd, 1980. "A Compensation Measure of the Cost of Unemployment to the Unemployed," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 95(2), pages 225-243.
    22. Florent Fremigacci, 2010. "Maximum Benefits Duration and Older Workers’Transitions out of Unemployment : a Regression Discontinuity Approach," Documents de recherche 10-12, Centre d'Études des Politiques Économiques (EPEE), Université d'Evry Val d'Essonne.
    23. Le Barbanchon, Thomas, 2016. "The effect of the potential duration of unemployment benefits on unemployment exits to work and match quality in France," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 16-29.
    24. Raj Chetty, 2008. "Moral Hazard versus Liquidity and Optimal Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(2), pages 173-234, April.
    25. Raj Chetty, 2008. "Moral Hazard vs. Liquidity and Optimal Unemployment Insurance," NBER Working Papers 13967, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    26. Mortensen, Dale T, 1970. "Job Search, the Duration of Unemployment, and the Phillips Curve," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(5), pages 847-862, December.
    27. Johannes F. Schmieder & Till von Wachter & Stefan Bender, 2016. "The Effect of Unemployment Benefits and Nonemployment Durations on Wages," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(3), pages 739-777, March.
    28. Wright, Randall, 1986. "The redistributive roles of unemployment insurance and the dynamics of voting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 377-399, December.
    29. Wallace K. C. Mok & Bruce D. Meyer & Kerwin Kofi Charles & Alexandra C. Achen, 2008. "A Note on "The Longitudinal Structure of Earnings Losses among Work-Limited Disabled Workers"," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(3), pages 721-728.
    30. Hopenhayn, Hugo A & Nicolini, Juan Pablo, 1997. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 412-438, April.
    31. Andreas Lichter, 2016. "Benefit Duration and Job Search Effort: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," NBER Chapters,in: Social Insurance Programs (Trans-Atlantic Public Economic Seminar - TAPES) National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    32. Lichter, Andreas, 2016. "Benefit Duration and Job Search Effort: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 10264, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    33. Stephan Dlugosz & Gesine Stephan & Ralf A. Wilke, 2014. "Fixing the Leak: Unemployment Incidence before and after a Major Reform of Unemployment Benefits in Germany," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 15(3), pages 329-352, August.
    34. Kyyrä, Tomi & Ollikainen, Virve, 2008. "To search or not to search? The effects of UI benefit extension for the older unemployed," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(10-11), pages 2048-2070, October.
    35. 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.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    policy evaluation; labor market reform; unemployment insurance; difference-in-differences;

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:lue:wpaper:377. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Wagner). General contact details of provider: https://leuphana.de/institute/ivwl.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.