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Repeat Use of Unemployment Insurance

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  • Bruce D. Meyer
  • Dan T. Rosenbaum

Abstract

We examine the extent to which unemployment insurance (UI) insures workers against unforeseen events or subsidizes firms and workers engaged in temporary layoffs. Our main source of data is a five-year panel of UI administrative records from five states. While most claimants receive UI only once during this period, nearly 40% of claims go to those individuals with three or more years of receipt during the five-year period. Most repeat recipients are concentrated in seasonal industries and are laid off by the same employer each time. We also find that middle-aged and high-paid workers are more likely to be repeat recipients, suggesting that workers in bad jobs are not the individuals who repeatedly receive UI.

Suggested Citation

  • Bruce D. Meyer & Dan T. Rosenbaum, "undated". "Repeat Use of Unemployment Insurance," IPR working papers 95-24, Institute for Policy Resarch at Northwestern University.
  • Handle: RePEc:wop:nwuipr:95-24
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Miles Corak, 1993. "Unemployment Insurance Once Again: The Incidence of Repeat Participation in the Canadian UI Program," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 19(2), pages 162-176, June.
    2. Topel, Robert H, 1983. "On Layoffs and Unemployment Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(4), pages 541-559, September.
    3. Bruce D. Meyer & Dan T. Rosenbaum, "undated". "Repeat Use of Unemployment Insurance," IPR working papers 95-24, Institute for Policy Resarch at Northwestern University.
    4. Rebecca M. Blank & David E. Card, 1991. "Recent Trends in Insured and Uninsured Unemployment: Is There an Explanation?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(4), pages 1157-1189.
    5. repec:mpr:mprres:652 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Card, David & Levine, Phillip B., 1994. "Unemployment insurance taxes and the cyclical and seasonal properties of unemployment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, pages 1-29.
    7. Patricia M. Anderson, 1993. "Linear Adjustment Costs and Seasonal Labor Demand: Evidence from Retail Trade Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(4), pages 1015-1042.
    8. 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.
    9. Martin Neil Baily, 1977. "Unemployment Insurance as Insurance for Workers," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(4), pages 495-504, July.
    10. Patricia M. Anderson & Bruce D. Meyer, 1993. "The Unemployment Insurance Payroll Tax and Interindustry and Interfirm Subsidies," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 7, pages 111-144 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Blank, Rebecca M & Ruggles, Patricia, 1994. "Short-Term Recidivism among Public-Assistance Recipients," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 49-53, May.
    12. Feldstein, Martin S, 1976. "Temporary Layoffs in the Theory of Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(5), pages 937-957, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Corak, Miles & Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Österberg, Torun, 2000. "Intergenerational Influences on the Receipt of Unemployment Insurance in Canada and Sweden," IZA Discussion Papers 184, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Lemieux, Thomas & MacLeod, W. Bentley, 2000. "Supply side hysteresis: the case of the Canadian unemployment insurance system," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1-2), pages 139-170, October.
    3. Bruce D. Meyer & Dan T. Rosenbaum, "undated". "Repeat Use of Unemployment Insurance," IPR working papers 95-24, Institute for Policy Resarch at Northwestern University.
    4. 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, pages 107-138.
    5. 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.
    6. Katherine Baicker & Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 1998. "A Distinctive System: Origins and Impact of U.S. Unemployment Compensation," NBER Chapters,in: The Defining Moment: The Great Depression and the American Economy in the Twentieth Century, pages 227-264 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Fernando Coloma, 1996. "Seguro de Desempleo: Teoría, Evidencia y una Propuesta," Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía, Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 33(99), pages 295-320.
    8. Katherine Baicker & Marit M. Rehavi, 2004. "Policy Watch: Trade Adjustment Assistance," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(2), pages 239-255, Spring.
    9. Glismann, Hans H. & Schrader, Klaus, 2001. "Alternative Systeme der Arbeitslosenversicherung: das Beispiel der Vereinigten Staaten und des Vereinigten Königreichs," Kiel Working Papers 1032, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    10. Feldstein, Martin & Altman, Dan, 2007. "Unemployment Insurance Savings Accounts," Scholarly Articles 2960185, Harvard University Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings

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