Unemployment Insurance Taxes and the Cyclical and Seasonal Properties of Unemployment
We combine Current Population Survey microdata for 1979-1987 with a newly assembled database of tax rates for the Unemployment Insurance system to measure the effects of imperfect experience-rating on temporary layoffs and other types of unemployment. We find a strong negative association between the degree of experience-rating and the rate of temporary layoff unemployment, with the largest effect in recessionary years and the smallest effect in expansionary years. Increases in the degree of experience-rating are also associated with dampened seasonal fluctuations in temporary layoffs, particularly in construction and durable manufacturing. The correlation between the degree of experience-rating and the unemployment rate of permanent job losers is smaller but also negative, whereas the correlation with the unemployment Me of job quitters and re-entrants is negligible. Attempts to control for the endogeneity of unemployment insurance taxes are consistent with a causal interpretation of our findings.
|Date of creation:||Mar 1992|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Journal of Public Economics, vol 53, no. 1 (February 1994)|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
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