nep-eur New Economics Papers
on Microeconomic European Issues
Issue of 2015‒09‒26
nineteen papers chosen by
Giuseppe Marotta
Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia

  1. Does Informal Learning at Work Differ between Temporary and Permanent Workers? Evidence from 20 OECD Countries By Ferreira Sequeda, Maria; de Grip, Andries; Van der Velden, Rolf
  2. Family background and educational path of Italian graduates By Loris Vergolini; Eleonora Vlach
  3. Does EMAS foster innovation in European firms? An empirical investigation By Fabio Montobbio; Ilaria Solito
  4. Time-Varying Individual Risk Attitudes over the Great Recession: A Comparison of Germany and Ukraine By Dohmen, Thomas; Lehmann, Hartmut; Pignatti, Norberto
  5. The IAB Job Vacancy Survey - Establishment Survey On Job Vacancies and Recruitment Processes : Waves 2000 to 2013 and subsequent quarters from 2006 By Moczall, Andreas; Müller, Anne; Rebien, Martina; Vogler-Ludwig, Kurt
  6. The Top Tail of the Wealth Distribution in Germany, France, Spain, and Greece By Stefan Bach; Andreas Thiemann; Aline Zucco
  7. Intertemporal pro-poorness By Florent Bresson; Jean-Yves Duclos; Flaviana Palmisano
  8. Country-Specific Preferences and Employment Rates in Europe By Simone Moriconi; Giovanni Peri
  9. Patent Boxes Design, Patents Location and Local R&D By Annette Alstadsæter; Salvador Barrios; Gaetan Nicodeme; Agnieszka Maria Skonieczna; Antonio Vezzani
  10. Monitoring and Assessment Framework for the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (MAFEIP) - Conceptual description of the Monitoring and Assessment Framework for the EIP on AHA By Fabienne Abadie; Christian Boehler
  11. Assessing policy options for the EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020 By Andries Brandsma; Francesco Di Comite; Olga Diukanova; D'Artis Kancs; Jesus Lopez Rodriguez; Damiaan Persyn; Lesley Potters
  12. A European Perspective on Long‐Term Unemployment By Eichhorst, Werner; Neder, Franziska; Tobsch, Verena; Wozny, Florian
  13. Nudges to Privacy Behaviour: Exploring Alternative Approaches to EU Data Protection Regulation By Shara Monteleone; Rene van Bavel; Nuria Rodríguez-Priego; Gabriele Esposito
  14. Behavioral Responses to Local Tax Rates: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from a Foreigners' Tax Scheme in Switzerland By Schmidheiny, Kurt; Slotwinski, Michaela
  15. Spouses’ retirement and the take-up of disability pension By Johnsen, Julian V.; Vaage, Kjell
  16. Unexpected consequences of liberalisation: metering, losses, load profiles and cost settlement in Spain’s electricity system By Joan Batalla-Bejerano; Maria Teresa Costa-Campi; Elisa Trujillo-Baute
  17. Unfair Wage Perceptions and Sleep: Evidence from German Survey Data By Christian Pfeifer
  18. How much do investors pay for houses? By Bracke, Philippe
  19. Population Ageing and Its Effects on the German Economy By Dirk Ulbricht; Dmitry Chervyakov

  1. By: Ferreira Sequeda, Maria (ROA, Maastricht University); de Grip, Andries (ROA, Maastricht University); Van der Velden, Rolf (ROA, Maastricht University)
    Abstract: Several studies have shown that employees with temporary contracts have lower training participation than those with permanent contracts. There is, however, no empirical literature on the difference in informal learning on the job between permanent and temporary workers. In this paper, we analyse this difference across 20 OECD countries using unique data from the recent PIAAC survey. Using a control function model with endogenous switching, we find that workers in temporary jobs engage in informal learning more intensively than their counterparts in permanent employment, although the former are, indeed, less likely to participate in formal training activities. In addition, we find evidence for complementarity between training and informal learning for both temporary and permanent employees. Our findings suggest that temporary employment need not be dead-end jobs. Instead, temporary jobs of high learning content could be a stepping stone towards permanent employment. However, our results also suggest that labour market segmentation in OECD countries occurs within temporary employment due to the distinction between jobs with low and high learning opportunities.
    Keywords: temporary contracts, informal learning, training, human capital investments
    JEL: E24 J24 J41
    Date: 2015–09
  2. By: Loris Vergolini; Eleonora Vlach
    Abstract: In this paper, we analyse social inequalities along the horizontal dimension of education in Italy. More precisely, we focus on the role of family background in completing specific fields of study both at secondary and tertiary levels of education. To mitigate the limitations of the traditional sequential model, we construct a typology of educational paths based on two axes: the prestige of one’s choice of high-school track (academic or vocational) and the labour market returns of the university field of study (high or low). The ranking of the latter is performed by looking at the labour market returns in terms of monthly net income, as provided by the Survey of Household Income and Wealth carried out by the Bank of Italy. We identify four paths: academic-high, academic-low, vocational-high, and vocational-low. We investigate the influence of social inequalities on educational path using data from the Istat “Survey on the transition to work of University graduates” regarding cohorts of university graduates in 1995, 1998, 2001, 2004 and 2007. Results obtained from multinomial logistic regressions confirm predictions based on rational action theory. More precisely, we find that family background, defined in terms of parental education, exerts a positive and significant effect on the completion of the most advantageous educational path. Moreover, we find that high-performing students from lower socio-economic backgrounds show a higher probability of completing the vocational-high path. This result suggests that a vocational upper secondary degree could be perceived as a sort of security option for students from less wealthy families, which allows them to invest in the most lucrative and risky fields at university.
    Keywords: social origins, educational path, fields of study, Italy
    JEL: I23 I24
    Date: 2015–09
  3. By: Fabio Montobbio (Università di Torino (Italy), CRIOS – Università L. Bocconi, Milano (Italy)); Ilaria Solito (Laboratoire RITM, Université Paris Sud, Faculté Jean Monnet (France))
    Abstract: This paper aims at analyzing whether environmental management systems can spur innovation at firm level, by providing new empirical evidence on the relationship between EMAS (Eco Management and Audit Scheme) and patented innovation. In applying a Negative Binomial model with Fixed Effect, we estimate the number of granted patents using EMAS as key explanatory variable. The relationship between EMAS and innovation is studied by using an original panel database composed by 30439 European firms belonging to all sectors and size. Moreover, we use an original instrumental variable to control for potential endogeneity. The analysis reveals that EMAS is positively correlated with innovation at firm level, although the results vary across countries and sectors.
    Keywords: Innovation; Environmental management systems; Patents; Eco-Management and Audit Scheme
    Date: 2015–09
  4. By: Dohmen, Thomas (University of Bonn); Lehmann, Hartmut (University of Bologna); Pignatti, Norberto (ISET, Tbilisi State University)
    Abstract: We use the panel data of the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) and of the Ukrainian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey (ULMS) to investigate whether risk attitudes have primary (exogenous) determinants that are valid in different stages of economic development and in a different structural context, comparing a mature capitalist economy and a transition economy. We then analyze the stability of the risk measures over time. Between 2007 and 2012 we have the Great Recession, which had a mild impact in the German labor market while it had a more profound impact on the Ukrainian labor market. This enables us to investigate whether and how the crisis impacted on the risk attitudes in the two countries. By focusing on self-employment we also investigate whether the reduced willingness to take risks as a consequence of the Great Recession affects labor market dynamics and outcomes.
    Keywords: risk attitudes, Great Recession, time variation, labor market outcomes, Germany, Ukraine
    JEL: J64 J65 P50
    Date: 2015–09
  5. By: Moczall, Andreas (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Müller, Anne (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Rebien, Martina (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Vogler-Ludwig, Kurt
    Abstract: "In recent years, there has been an increased interest in data on job vacancies that are representative of the entire economy. Data from administrative sources cannot meet this demand adequately in structure or coverage. In Germany, this gap is filled by the German Job Vacancy Survey of the IAB, a representative survey of establishments providing valid data on the number and the structure of job vacancies in the entire German economy. It also provides data crucial to the understanding of recruitment processes and the reasons for the lapsing of vacancies. This enables a detailed examination of labor market processes, in particular search and hiring decisions. Beginning in 2011, data from all waves have gradually been made available to external researchers through the Research Data Centre (FDZ) of the Federal Employment Agency at the Institute for Employment Research." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))<br><br><b>Additional Information</b><ul><li><a href=' 5/'>Au szählungen</a></li></ul>
    Date: 2015–09–11
  6. By: Stefan Bach; Andreas Thiemann; Aline Zucco
    Abstract: We analyze the top tail of the wealth distribution in Germany, France, Spain, and Greece based on the Household Finance and Consumption Survey (HFCS). Since top wealth is likely to be underrepresented in household surveys we integrate the big fortunes from rich lists, estimate a Pareto distribution, and impute the missing rich. Instead of the Forbes list we mainly rely on national rich lists since they represent a broader base for the big fortunes. As a result, the top percentile share of household wealth in Germany jumps up from 24 percent in the HFCS alone to 33 percent after top wealth imputation. For France and Spain we find only a small effect of the imputation since rich households are better captured in the survey. The results for Greece are ambiguous since the data do not show clear concentration patterns.
    Keywords: Wealth distribution, missing rich, Pareto distribution
    JEL: D31 C46 C81
    Date: 2015
  7. By: Florent Bresson; Jean-Yves Duclos; Flaviana Palmisano
    Abstract: A long-lasting scientific and policy debate queries the impact of growth on distribution. A specific branch of the micro-oriented literature, known as ‘pro-poor growth’, seeks in particular to understand the impact of growth on poverty. Much of that literature supposes that the distributional impact should be measured in an anonymous fashion. The income dynamics and mobility impacts of growth are thus ignored. The paper extends this framework in two important manners. First, the paper uses an ‘intertemporal pro-poorness’ formulation that accounts separately for anonymous and mobility growth impacts. Second, the paper’s treatment of mobility encompasses both the benefit of “mobility as equalizer” and the variability cost of poverty transiency. Several decompositions are proposed to measure the importance of each of these impacts of growth on the pro-poorness of distributional changes. The framework is applied to panel data on 23 European countries drawn from the ‘European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions’ (EU-SILC) survey.
    Keywords: pro-poorness, income mobility, growth, poverty dynamics,
    JEL: D31 D63 I32
    Date: 2015–09–16
  8. By: Simone Moriconi (Università Cattolica di Milano and CREA, University of Luxembourg); Giovanni Peri (University of California, Davis)
    Abstract: European countries exhibit significant differences in employment rates of adult males. Differences in labor-leisure preferences, partly determined by cultural values that vary across countries, can be responsible for part of these differences. However, differences in labor market institutions, productivity, and skills of the labor force are also crucial factors and likely correlated with preferences. In this paper we use variation among first- and second-generation cross-country European migrants to isolate the effect of culturally transmitted labor-leisure preferences on individual employment rates. If migrants maintain some of their country of origin labor-leisure preferences as they move to different labor market conditions, we can separate the impact of preferences from the effect of other factors. We find country-specific labor-leisure preferences explain about 24% of the top-bottom variation in employment rates across European countries.
    Keywords: Labor-Leisure Preferences, Cultural Transmission, Employment, Europe, Migrants
    JEL: J22 J61 Z10
    Date: 2015
  9. By: Annette Alstadsæter (University of Oslo); Salvador Barrios (European Commission JRC-IPTS); Gaetan Nicodeme (European Commission DG TAXUD); Agnieszka Maria Skonieczna (European Commission DG TAXUD); Antonio Vezzani (European Commission JRC-IPTS)
    Abstract: Patent boxes have been heavily debated for their role in corporate tax competition. This paper uses firm-level data for the period 2000-2011 for the top 2,000 corporate research and development (R&D) investors worldwide to consider the determinants of patent registration across a large sample of countries. Importantly, we disentangle the effects of corporate income taxation from the tax advantage of patent boxes. We also exploit a new and original dataset on patent box features such as the conditionality on performing research in the country, and their scope. We find that patent boxes have a considerable effect on attracting patents, mostly because of their favourable tax treatment, especially for high-quality patents. Patent boxes with a large scope in terms of tax base definition also have stronger effects on the location of patents. The size of the tax advantage offered through patent box regimes is found to deter local innovative activities, whereas R&D development conditions tend to attenuate this adverse effect. Our simulations show that, on average, countries imposing such development conditions tend to grant a tax advantage that is slightly greater than optimal from a local R&D impact perspective.
    Keywords: Corporate taxation; patent boxes; location; patents; R&D; nexus approach
    JEL: F21 F23 H25 H73 O31 O34
    Date: 2015
  10. By: Fabienne Abadie (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Christian Boehler (European Commission – JRC - IPTS)
    Abstract: After having identified a short list of candidate indicators for assessing the impact of the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP on AHA) in the first and second reports on outcome indicators for MAFEIP, the next step in this project was to develop a quantitative approach that could be suited to establishing a link between candidate indicators and the EIP on AHA objectives. This report therefore conceptualises a model for estimating the impact of the Partnership's activities on its targets for health and sustainability of health and care system using the outcome indicators that were previously identified. In accordance with the EIP on AHA headline target of increasing the average healthy life expectancy of European citizens by two years by 2020, we took the methods to calculate Healthy Life Years (HLY) as a starting point, but adapted them to better accommodate the needs of MAFEIP. The rationale for this adaptation was to ensure the resulting model can adequately estimate the health impacts achieved by EIP on AHA commitments, and also to utilise data on indicators that are most frequently reported across EIP on AHA participants. The resulting model is based on a Markov process with three generic health states ('baseline health', 'deteriorated health' and 'death'), which can draw upon data from primary and secondary outcome indicators across populations, interventions, commitments and geographic domains. We discuss how the model's flexibility that allows it to be applied to different contexts could be enhanced further through the optional inclusion of additional health states or extensions for incorporating additional secondary indicators. We also discuss how to use the model for estimating the impact of activities delivered within the EIP on AHA on the sustainability of health and care systems in terms of the incremental impact of the interventions on health and care expenditure. We propose that the model should be implemented as a web-based monitoring tool to enable stakeholders within commitments to independently assess the impact of their respective interventions on health and sustainability of health and care systems, with the support and guidance of IPTS.
    Keywords: EIP, Active and Healthy Ageing, EIP on AHA, indicators, monitoring, framework
    JEL: I11 I18 O33 O38
    Date: 2015–05
  11. By: Andries Brandsma (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Francesco Di Comite (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Olga Diukanova (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); D'Artis Kancs (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Jesus Lopez Rodriguez (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Damiaan Persyn (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Lesley Potters (European Commission – JRC - IPTS)
    Abstract: In this paper we estimate the impact on GDP of Cohesion Policy 2014-2020 for 267 EU regions running a set of simulations with RHOMOLO, a spatial CGE model tailored for economic analysis at the subnational level. We do so by treating the different parts of Cohesion Policy as exogenous and independent shocks, which are first considered separately and then combined to estimate an overall effect. Our simulation suggests that European regions display significant heterogeneity in their deviations from the baseline due to Cohesion Policy, both in absolute terms and relative to the amounts received.
    Keywords: RHOMOLO; multiregional spatial CGE; Cohesion Policy
    JEL: R13 R58 H54 O32
    Date: 2015–08
  12. By: Eichhorst, Werner (IZA); Neder, Franziska (IZA); Tobsch, Verena (E-x-AKT WIRTSCHAFTSFORSCHUNG); Wozny, Florian (IZA)
    Abstract: In contrast to the recently decreasing unemployment rates in the EU, long-term unemployment remains at alarming levels. An economic recovery will not be sufficient to get all long-term unemployed back to work; rather, there is a need for effective policies addressing the long-term unemployed. To address these issues, this paper starts with an interpretation of standard measures of long-term unemployment and alternative measures of long-term non-employment. Next, we take a closer look at active labor market policies such as training, subsidized employment and public work and investigate which kind is most effective for the reintegration of long-term unemployed persons. Subsequently, the special role of Public Employment Services (PES) and the importance of an individual approach and targeting is stressed to increase the employability of hard-to-place and distant jobseekers from the labor market. Furthermore, we take into account the role of alternative benefit systems for working-age non-employed people. In the final section, we conclude and offer policy advice with a particular focus on the EU.
    Keywords: long‐term unemployment, activation, Europe, disability benefits
    JEL: J64 J65 J68
    Date: 2015–09
  13. By: Shara Monteleone (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Rene van Bavel (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Nuria Rodríguez-Priego (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Gabriele Esposito (European Commission – JRC - IPTS)
    Abstract: The report seeks to bring behavioural research methods for privacy to the attention of EU policy-makers. It argues that changes in web interface design can be a useful policy alternative to the traditional 'privacy notice' approach. Specifically, it examines whether web interface design has effect on people's online privacy behaviour through an online experiment (n=3229) in four European countries. Results show that the presence of an anthropomorphic character leads to greater disclosure of personal information, both directly and passively; the presence of a privacy notice leads to greater direct information disclosure. Additional psychological constructs (such as subjects' awareness that they were revealing personal information) were also recorded, and a demographic analysis according to gender, age, education and country of residence carried out.
    Keywords: ICT
    Date: 2015–09
  14. By: Schmidheiny, Kurt; Slotwinski, Michaela
    Abstract: We study behavioral responses to local income taxes exploiting a special tax regime which applies to foreign employees residing in Switzerland. The used institutional setting generates two thresholds through which locally heterogeneous taxation is assigned: An income threshold at 120,000 Swiss francs and a duration threshold at 5 years of stay in Switzerland. We exploit these thresholds by applying a discontinuity in density design and a fuzzy RDD to administrative income data. We find causal evidence for strategic income bunching for wage earners and tax induced intra-national mobility. Several pieces of evidence suggest that individuals have to "learn the tax code" and that knowledge and information transmission through local networks plays a major role in the behavioral response to tax incentives.
    Keywords: income bunching; income taxes; regression discontinuity design; tax induced mobility
    JEL: H24 H31 J61
    Date: 2015–09
  15. By: Johnsen, Julian V. (Department of Economics, University of Bergen); Vaage, Kjell (Department of Economics, University of Bergen)
    Abstract: This paper studies the effect of one spouse’s retirement on the Retirement of the other using a Norwegian early reform, which reduced the retirement age for workers in selected firms. The findings indicate that after the reform, the spouses of those who could retire earlier were less likely to remain in the workforce compared to the spouses of those who were not included in the early retirement scheme. This finding is compatible with preferences for shared spousal leisure. Contrary to previous findings, wives respond to husbands’ early retirement decisions. However, the findings are less conclusive with respect to husbands’ response to wives’ early retirement decisions. An investigation of the responding wives’ labor market exit strategy reveals that the reform increased their likelihood of retiring with a disability pension, representing a cost to public finance incurred in addition to the general retirement costs. This study contributes to other recent evidence on the influence of of non-health-related factors on the use of disability benefits among older workers.
    Keywords: Joint retirement; disability pension; older workers
    JEL: D04 H55 J14 J26
    Date: 2015–09–24
  16. By: Joan Batalla-Bejerano (Rovira i Virgili University); Maria Teresa Costa-Campi (University of Barcelona & IEB); Elisa Trujillo-Baute (University of Warwick & IEB)
    Abstract: European energy markets have undergone a major transformation as they have advanced towards market liberalisation and it is vital that the details of these developments be carefully examined. The success of liberalisation is based on smart regulation, which has been capable of providing solutions to unforeseen events in the process. Our paper seeks to contribute to existing understanding of the unexpected consequences of the liberalisation process in the power system by examining a natural experiment that occurred in Spain in 2009. In that year, the electricity supply by distribution system operators (DSOs) disappeared. This positive change in retail market competition, as we demonstrate in this paper, has had an unexpected effect in terms of the system’s balancing requirements. We undertake a rigorous assessment of the economic consequences of this policy change for the whole system, in terms of its impact on final electricity prices.
    Keywords: Electricity market design, balancing services, electricity market balance, liberalization, natural experiment
    JEL: L51 Q41 Q42 Q47
    Date: 2015
  17. By: Christian Pfeifer
    Abstract: The author uses large-scale German survey data for the years 2009, 2011 and 2013 in order to analyze the nexus between the individual perception of being unfairly paid and measures for quantity and quality of sleep, namely, hours of sleep during workweek and during weekend, happiness with sleep, and sleep disorders diagnosed by a doctor. Main findings of the regression analysis are that workers, who perceive their own wage as unfair, sleep significantly less during the workweek (1.2 to 2.5 percent), are significantly less satisfied with their sleep (1 to 5 percent) and are significantly more likely to have sleep disorders (7 to 36 percent). Moreover, workers with more weekly working hours sleep significantly less during the workweek (0.1 to 0.2 percent per hour) and are significantly less satisfied with their sleep (0.1 to 0.2 percent per hour). The size of the hourly wage is however not significantly correlated with any of the sleep outcomes and the household income seems also of minor importance, even though the estimated coefficients have the expected signs implied by substitution and income effects. The overall results suggest that unfair wage perceptions, which are related to stress, negatively affect workers’ sleep and, consequently, their health.
    Keywords: fairness; health; income; sleep quantity; sleep quality; wage; working hours
    JEL: I12 J22 J31
    Date: 2015
  18. By: Bracke, Philippe (Bank of England)
    Abstract: In 2013 buy-to-rent investors — referred to as buy-to-let (BTL) in the United Kingdom — accounted for 13% of all UK mortgage-funded housing transactions and for an even greater fraction of non-mortgage sales. This paper studies the behaviour of BTL investors using 2009–14 micro data. Combining the universe of transactions from the England and Wales Land Registry with online listings from WhenFresh/Zoopla, I identify a BTL purchase as a transaction where a rental listing on the same property appears on the web in the six subsequent months. The micro data reproduce the increase in BTL transactions over 2009–14 and show that BTL investors are more likely to invest in regions with large rental markets. I find that, on average, BTL investors pay 0.9%–1.1% less than other buyers for equivalent properties. Discounts are larger (around 2%) in regions with less liquid housing markets. Results are robust to including detailed geographical fixed effect and advertised sale prices in the regressions. I also show that properties purchased by investors spend on average five days less on the market.
    Keywords: House prices; rents; real estate investors
    JEL: R21 R31
    Date: 2015–09–18
  19. By: Dirk Ulbricht; Dmitry Chervyakov
    Abstract: The latest long-term projection of Germany’s population implies a clear trend: even though slight growth is expected over the next decade, a decline in the future is almost inevitable. Furthermore, an ageing society combined with a low fertility rate will lead to massive shrinkage of the working-age population. What are the social and economic consequences of these developments? Is a decline in economic growth unavoidable? We present the results of the long-term population projection and summarize the various effects population ageing may have on Germany.
    Date: 2015

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