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Crime and European labour market policy

  • Ochsen, Carsten

In this paper we investigate the effects of labour market policy on several types of criminal offences for fifteen European countries. The main results are the following: Firstly, the results change markedly if we control for unobserved heterogeneity. In the context of criminal offences the estimates seem to be reliable only if we apply fixed effects instead of simple pool specifications. Secondly, the effects of labour market policy vary considerably with respect to the different types of criminal offences and cannot be subdivided into unambiguous effects on property crimes and violent crimes, respectively. Thirdly, the proxy variables for labour market policy we consider have different importance with respect to their effect on criminal offences. Benefit replacement rate, benefit duration, and average years of schooling seem to be important, whereas active labour market policy appears not to be linked to crime. The combination of a shorter benefit duration and higher replacement rate, like in the Nordic countries, seems to be a 'crime reducing' combination.

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Paper provided by University of Rostock, Institute of Economics in its series Thuenen-Series of Applied Economic Theory with number 55.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:roswps:55
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  1. Bruce Weinberg & Eric Gould & David Mustard, 1998. "Crime Rates and Local Labor Market Opportunities in the United States: 1979-1995," Working Papers 98-11, Ohio State University, Department of Economics.
  2. Richard B. Freeman, 1996. "Why Do So Many Young American Men Commit Crimes and What Might We Do about It?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 25-42, Winter.
  3. Belot, Michèle & van Ours, Jan C., 2000. "Does the Recent Success of Some OECD Countries in Lowering their Unemployment Rates Lie in the Clever Design of their Labour Market Reform?," IZA Discussion Papers 147, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Levitt, Steven D, 1997. "Using Electoral Cycles in Police Hiring to Estimate the Effect of Police on Crime," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 270-90, June.
  5. Raphael, Steven & WINTER-EBMER, RUDOLF, 1998. "Identifying the Effect of Unemployment on Crime," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt5hb4h56g, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  6. Entorf, Horst & Spengler, Hannes, 2000. "Socioeconomic and demographic factors of crime in Germany: Evidence from panel data of the German states," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 75-106, March.
  7. Blanchard, Olivier & Wolfers, Justin, 2000. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages C1-33, March.
  8. Steven D. Levitt, 1998. "Juvenile Crime and Punishment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1156-1185, December.
  9. Steven D. Levitt, 1995. "The Effect of Prison Population Size on Crime Rates: Evidence From Prison Overcrowding Litigation," NBER Working Papers 5119, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Carmichael, Fiona & Ward, Robert, 2001. "Male unemployment and crime in England and Wales," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 111-115, October.
  11. Michael Lechner & Ruth Miquel & Conny Wunsch, 2004. "Long-run Effects of Public Sector Sponsored Training in West Germany," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2004 2004-19, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
  12. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters, in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Ehrlich, Isaac, 1973. "Participation in Illegitimate Activities: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 521-65, May-June.
  14. Dean Baker & Andrew Glyn & David Howell & John Schmitt, 2002. "Labor Market Institutions and Unemployment: A Critical Assessment of the Cross-Country Evidence," SCEPA working paper series. SCEPA's main areas of research are macroeconomic policy, inequality and poverty, and globalization. 2002-17, Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA), The New School.
  15. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2003. "An Index of Labour Market Well-being for OECD Countries," CSLS Research Reports 2003-05, Centre for the Study of Living Standards, revised Jan 2004.
  16. Freeman, Richard B., 1999. "The economics of crime," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 52, pages 3529-3571 Elsevier.
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