IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Labor Supply Effects of Social Insurance

  • Alan B. Krueger
  • Bruce D. Meyer

This chapter examines the labor supply effects of social insurance programs. We argue that this topic deserves separate treatment from the rest of the labor supply literature because individuals may be imperfectly informed as to the rules of the programs and because key parameters are likely to differ for those who are eligible for social insurance programs, such as the disabled. Furthermore, differences in social insurance programs often provide natural experiments with exogenous changes in wages or incomes that can be used to estimate labor supply responses. Finally, social insurance often affects different margins of labor supply. For example, the labor supply literature deals mostly with adjustments in the number of hours worked, whereas the incentives of social insurance programs frequently affect the decision of whether to work at all. The empirical work on unemployment insurance (UI) and workers' compensation (WC) insurance finds that the programs tend to increase the length of time employees spend out of work. Most of the estimates of the elasticities of lost work time that incorporate both the incidence and duration of claims are close to 1.0 for unemployment insurance and between 0.5 and 1.0 for workers' compensation. These elasticities are substantially larger than the labor supply elasticities typically found for men in studies of the effects of wages or taxes on hours of work. The evidence on disability insurance and (especially) social security retirement suggests much smaller and less conclusively established labor supply effects. Part of the explanation for this difference probably lies in the fact that UI and WC lead to short-run variation in wages with mostly a substitution effect. Our review suggest that it would be misleading to apply a universal set of labor supply elasticities to these diverse problems and populations.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w9014.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 9014.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: Jun 2002
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Krueger, Alan B. & Meyer, Bruce D., 2002. "Labor supply effects of social insurance," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 33, pages 2327-2392 Elsevier.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9014
Note: LS PE
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Web page: http://www.nber.orgEmail:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. John W. Ruser, 1985. "Workers' Compensation Insurance, Experience-Rating, and Occupational Injuries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(4), pages 487-503, Winter.
  2. David H. Autor & Mark G. Duggan, 2001. "The Rise in Disability Recipiency and the Decline in Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 8336, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Devine, Theresa J. & Kiefer, Nicolas M., 1991. "Empirical Labor Economics: The Search Approach," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195059366.
  4. David Card & Phillip B. Levine, 1998. "Extended Benefits and the Duration of UI Spells: Evidence from the New Jersey Extended Benefit Program," NBER Working Papers 6714, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Moen, Jon, 1987. "The Labor of Older Men: A Comment," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 47(03), pages 761-767, September.
  6. Lawrence F. Katz & Bruce D. Meyer, 1988. "Unemployment Insurance, Recall Expectations, And Unemployment Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 2594, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Parsons, Donald O, 1991. "The Health and Earnings of Rejected Disability Insurance Applicants: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1419-26, December.
  8. Carling, Kenneth & Edin, Per-Anders & Harkman, Anders & Holmlund, Bertil, 1996. "Unemployment duration, unemployment benefits, and labor market programs in Sweden," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(3), pages 313-334, March.
  9. Alan Krueger, 1990. "Worker's Compensation Insurance and the Duration of Workplace Injuries," Working Papers 641, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  10. David Card & Phillip B. Levine, 1992. "Unemployment Insurance Taxes and the Cyclical and Seasonal Properties of Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 4030, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Daron Acemoglu & Joshua D. Angrist, 2001. "Consequences of Employment Protection? The Case of the Americans with Disabilities Act," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(5), pages 915-957, October.
  12. Kahn, James A., 1988. "Social security, liquidity, and early retirement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 97-117, February.
  13. Kathryn Anderson & Richard V. Burkhauser & Joseph F. Quinn, 1986. "Do retirement dreams come true? The effect of unanticipated events on retirement plans," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 39(4), pages 518-526, July.
  14. Gruber, J. & Madrian, B.C., 1994. "Health Insurance Availability and the Retirement Decision," Working papers 94-04, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  15. Eric M. Engen & Jonathan Gruber, 1995. "Unemployment Insurance and Precautionary Saving," NBER Working Papers 5252, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. 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.
  17. Dale T. Mortensen, 1977. "Unemployment insurance and job search decisions," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(4), pages 505-517, July.
  18. Moffitt, Robert, 1985. "Unemployment insurance and the distribution of unemployment spells," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 85-101, April.
  19. John Bound, 1989. "The Health and Earnings of Rejected Disability Insurance Applicants," NBER Working Papers 2816, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Butler, Richard J & Worrall, John D, 1985. "Work Injury Compensation and the Duration of Nonwork Spells," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 95(379), pages 714-24, September.
  21. Victor R. Fuchs & Alan B. Krueger & James M. Poterba, 1998. "Economists' Views about Parameters, Values, and Policies: Survey Results in Labor and Public Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(3), pages 1387-1425, September.
  22. Baker, Michael & Benjamin, Dwayne, 1999. "Early Retirement Provisions and the Labor Force Behavior of Older Men: Evidence from Canada," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(4), pages 724-56, October.
  23. Gruber, Jonathan, 1997. "The Consumption Smoothing Benefits of Unemployment Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 192-205, March.
  24. Phillip Levine, 1991. "Spillover Effects Between the Insured and Uninsured Unemployed," Working Papers 663, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  25. Alan S. Blinder & Roger H. Gordon & Donald E. Wise, 1980. "Reconsidering the Work Disincentive Effects of Social Security," NBER Working Papers 0562, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Jaap H. Abbring & Gerard J. Berg & Jan C. Ours, 2005. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance Sanctions on the Transition Rate from Unemployment to Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(505), pages 602-630, 07.
  27. Feldstein, Martin S, 1976. "Temporary Layoffs in the Theory of Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(5), pages 937-57, October.
  28. 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.
  29. Crawford, Vincent P & Lilien, David M, 1981. "Social Security and the Retirement Decision," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 96(3), pages 505-29, August.
  30. Bruce D. Meyer & Dan T. Rosenbaum, 1996. "Repeat Use of Unemployment Insurance," NBER Working Papers 5423, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  31. Ham, John C & Rea, Samuel A, Jr, 1987. "Unemployment Insurance and Male Unemployment Duration in Canada," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 5(3), pages 325-53, July.
  32. Thomas DeLeire, 2000. "The Wage and Employment Effects of the Americans with Disabilities Act," Working Papers 0008, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
  33. Alan L. Gustman, 1980. "Analyzing the Relation of Unemployment Insurance to Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 0512, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  34. David Card & W. Craig Riddell, 1993. "A Comparative Analysis of Unemployment in Canada and the United States," NBER Chapters, in: Small Differences That Matter: Labor Markets and Income Maintenance in Canada and the United States, pages 149-190 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  35. David Card & Brian P. McCall, 1996. "Is Workers' Compensation covering uninsured medical costs? Evidence from the "Monday effect."," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 49(4), pages 690-706, July.
  36. Holmlund, B., 1997. "Unemployment Insurance in Theory and Practice," Papers 1997-25, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  37. W. Craig Riddell & Andrew Sharpe, 1998. "The Canada-US Unemployment Rate Gap: An Introduction and Overview," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 24(s1), pages 1-37, February.
  38. Butler, Richard J & Worrall, John D, 1983. "Workers' Compensation: Benefit and Injury Claims Rates in the Seventies," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(4), pages 580-89, November.
  39. Krueger, Alan B., 1990. "Incentive effects of workers' compensation insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 73-99, February.
  40. Lee, Chulhee, 1998. "The Rise of the Welfare State and Labor-Force Participation of Older Males: Evidence from the Pre-Social Security Era," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 222-26, May.
  41. Sheshinski, E. & Diamond, P., 1992. "Economic Aspects of Optimal Disability Benefits," Working papers 92-5, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  42. Rebecca Blank & David Card & Whitney Newey, 1988. "Recent Trends in Insured and Uninsured Unemployment: Is There an Explanation?," Working Papers 623, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  43. Blau, David M., 1997. "Social security and the labor supply of older married couples," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 373-418, December.
  44. Bruce D. Meyer, 1995. "Lessons from the U.S. Unemployment Insurance Experiments," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(1), pages 91-131, March.
  45. Feldstein, Martin S, 1978. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance on Temporary Layoff Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(5), pages 834-46, December.
  46. Gordon, Roger H. & Blinder, Alan S., 1980. "Market wages, reservation wages, and retirement decisions," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 277-308, October.
  47. Baily, Martin Neil, 1977. "On the Theory of Layoffs and Unemployment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(5), pages 1043-63, July.
  48. Knut Roed & Tao Zhang, 2003. "Does Unemployment Compensation Affect Unemployment Duration?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(484), pages 190-206, January.
  49. Feldstein, Martin & Liebman, Jeffrey B., 2002. "Social security," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 32, pages 2245-2324 Elsevier.
  50. Bruce D. Meyer & W. Kip Viscusi & David L. Durbin, 1990. "Workers' Compensation and Injury Duration: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," NBER Working Papers 3494, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  51. Joseph F. Quinn & Richard V. Burkhauser & Daniel A. Myers, 1990. "Passing the Torch: The Influence of Economic Incentives on Work and Retirement," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number pt, December.
  52. Adams, James D., 1986. "Equilibrium taxation and experience rating in a federal system of unemployment insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 51-77, February.
  53. Burtless, Gary, 1986. "Social Security, Unanticipated Benefit Increases, and the Timing of Retirement," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(5), pages 781-805, October.
  54. James R. Chelius, 1982. "The influence of workers' compensation on safety incentives," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 35(2), pages 235-242, January.
  55. Holmlund, Bertil, 1983. " Payroll Taxes and Wage Inflation: The Swedish Experience," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 85(1), pages 1-15.
  56. 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.
  57. Michael J. Moore & W. Kip Viscusi, 1989. "Promoting Safety through Workers' Compensation: The Efficacy and Net Wage Costs of Injury Insurance," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 20(4), pages 499-515, Winter.
  58. Patricia M. Anderson & Bruce D. Meyer, 1994. "The Effects of Unemployment Insurance Taxes and Benefits on Layoffs Using Firm and Individual Data," NBER Working Papers 4960, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  59. Topel, Robert H, 1983. "On Layoffs and Unemployment Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(4), pages 541-59, September.
  60. Jonathan Gruber, 1994. "The Consumption Smoothing Benefits of Unemployment Insurance," NBER Working Papers 4750, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  61. Atkinson, Anthony B & Micklewright, John, 1991. "Unemployment Compensation and Labor Market Transitions: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(4), pages 1679-1727, December.
  62. Solon, Gary R, 1985. "Work Incentive Effects of Taxing Unemployment Benefits," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(2), pages 295-306, March.
  63. Krueger, Alan B & Burton, John F, Jr, 1990. "The Employers' Costs of Workers' Compensation Insurance: Magnitudes, Determinants, and Public Policy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(2), pages 228-40, May.
  64. Parsons, Donald O, 1980. "The Decline in Male Labor Force Participation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 117-34, February.
  65. Rust, J., 1994. "How Social Security and Medicare Affect Retirement Behavior in a World of Incomplete Markets," Working papers 9430, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  66. David Card & Brian P. McCall, 1996. "Is Workers' Compensation Covering Uninsured Medical Costs? Evidence from the “Monday Effectâ€," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 49(4), pages 690-706, July.
  67. Danziger, Sheldon & Haveman, Robert & Plotnick, Robert, 1981. "How Income Transfer Programs Affect Work, Savings, and the Income Distribution: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 975-1028, September.
  68. Anderson, Patricia M & Meyer, Bruce D, 1997. "Unemployment Insurance Takeup Rates and the After-Tax Value of Benefits," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(3), pages 913-37, August.
  69. Summers, Lawrence H, 1989. "Some Simple Economics of Mandated Benefits," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(2), pages 177-83, May.
  70. Anthony J. Pellechio, 1981. "Social Security and the Decision to Retire," NBER Working Papers 0734, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  71. Joseph F. Quinn, 1999. "Has the Early Retirement Trend Reversed?," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 424, Boston College Department of Economics.
  72. Finis Welch, 1977. "What have we learned from empirical studies of unemployment insurance?," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(4), pages 451-461, July.
  73. Bound, John & Burkhauser, Richard V., 1999. "Economic analysis of transfer programs targeted on people with disabilities," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 51, pages 3417-3528 Elsevier.
  74. Pellechio, Anthony J, 1979. "Social Security Financing and Retirement Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 284-87, May.
  75. McCall, Brian P, 1996. "Unemployment Insurance Rules, Joblessness, and Part-Time Work," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(3), pages 647-82, May.
  76. Bruce D. Meyer, 1988. "Unemployment Insurance And Unemployment Spells," NBER Working Papers 2546, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  77. Bound, John, 1991. "The Health and Earnings of Rejected Disability Insurance Applicants: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1427-34, December.
  78. James Banks & Carl Emmerson, 2000. "Public and private pension spending: principles, practice and the need for reform," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 21(1), pages 1-63, March.
  79. Ruser, John W, 1991. "Workers' Compensation and Occupational Injuries and Illnesses," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(4), pages 325-50, October.
  80. Besley, Timothy & Case, Anne, 2000. "Unnatural Experiments? Estimating the Incidence of Endogenous Policies," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(467), pages F672-94, November.
  81. Cullen, Julie Berry & Gruber, Jonathan, 2000. "Does Unemployment Insurance Crowd Out Spousal Labor Supply?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(3), pages 546-72, July.
  82. Pencavel, John, 1987. "Labor supply of men: A survey," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 1, pages 3-102 Elsevier.
  83. Jonathan Gruber & Peter Orszag, 2000. "Does the Social Security Earnings Test Affect Labor Supply and Benefits Receipt?," NBER Working Papers 7923, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  84. Dan Black & Kermit Daniel & Seth Sanders, 2002. "The Impact of Economic Conditions on Participation in Disability Programs: Evidence from the Coal Boom and Bust," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 27-50, March.
  85. Nickell, Stephen, 1998. "Unemployment: Questions and Some Answers," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(448), pages 802-16, May.
  86. Boskin, Michael J, 1977. "Social Security and Retirement Decisions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 15(1), pages 1-25, January.
  87. William P. Curington, 1994. "Compensation for Permanent Impairment and the Duration of Work Absence: Evidence from Four Natural Experiments," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(3), pages 888-910.
  88. Alan S. Blinder & Roger H. Gordon & Donald E. Wise, 1981. "Social Security, Bequests, and the Life Cycle Theory of Saving: Cross-Sectional Tests," NBER Working Papers 0619, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  89. Viscusi, W Kip & Moore, Michael J, 1987. "Workers' Compensation: Wage Effects, Benefit Inadequacies, and the Value of Health Losses," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(2), pages 249-61, May.
  90. Leora Friedberg, 2000. "The Labor Supply Effects of the Social Security Earnings Test," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(1), pages 48-63, February.
  91. Butler, Richard J & Gardner, B Delworth & Gardner, Harold H, 1997. "Workers' Compensation Costs When Maximum Benefits Change," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 259-69, December.
  92. Anderson, Patricia M. & Meyer, Bruce D., 1997. "The effects of firm specific taxes and government mandates with an application to the U.S. unemployment insurance program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 119-145, August.
  93. Anderson, Patricia M & Meyer, Bruce D, 1993. "Unemployment Insurance in the United States: Layoff Incentives and Cross Subsidies," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages S70-95, January.
  94. Jonathan S. Leonard, 1979. "The Social Security Disability Program and Labor Force Participation," NBER Working Papers 0392, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  95. John Bound & Timothy Waidmann, 2000. "Accounting for Recent Declines in Employment Rates among the Working-Aged Disabled," NBER Working Papers 7975, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9014. 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: ()

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.