nep-eur New Economics Papers
on Microeconomic European Issues
Issue of 2018‒10‒22
24 papers chosen by
Giuseppe Marotta
Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia

  1. Empirics on the causal effects of rent control in Germany By Mense, Andreas; Michelsen, Claus; Kholodilin, Konstantin
  2. The Labour Market Integration of Refugees in Germany: Evidence from a Field Experiment By Giesing, Yvonne; Battisti, Michele; Laurentsyeva, Nadzeya
  3. Interaction Delay and Marginal Cost in Swedish Bicycle Traffic By Johansson , Fredrik; Pyddoke, Roger
  4. A regression discontinuity evaluation of reducing early retirement eligibility in Poland By Oliwia Komada; Pawel Strzelecki; Joanna Tyrowicz
  5. Being dependent rather than handicapped in France: Does the institutional barrier at 60 affect care arrangements? By Marianne Tenand
  6. An investigation into the effects of gender, age, experience and local business market on the issuance of different disciplinary sanctions on real estate brokers - a Swedish case By Rickard Engström; Söderberg Inga-Lill
  7. Child Sleep and Maternal Labour Market Outcomes By Costa-Font, Joan; Flèche, Sarah
  8. Mental Health and Its Socioeconomic Inequality in Sweden: The Role of Demographic Changes over Time By Linder, Anna; Spika, Devon; Gerdtham, Ulf-G.; Fritzell, Sara; Heckley, Gawain
  9. Long-run Patterns of Labour Market Polarisation: Evidence from German Micro Data By Bachmann, Ronald; Cim, Merve; Green, Colin
  10. Optimal Taxation Under Different Concepts of Justness By Jessen, Robin; Metzing, Maria; Rostam-Afschar, Davud
  11. Employment adjustments following rises and reductions in minimum wages: New insights from a survey experiment By Bossler, Mario; Oberfichtner, Michael; Schnabel, Claus
  12. Technological Diversification in European Regions: The Role of E-skills By Fulvio Castellacci; Davide Consoli; Artur Santoalha
  13. Are Retirees More Satisfied? – Anticipation and Adaptation Effects of Retirement on Subjective Well-Being: A Panel Analysis for Germany By Joachim Merz
  14. An assessment of EU Cohesion Policy in the UK regions: direct effects and the dividend of targeting By Marco Di Cataldo; Vassilis Monastiriotis
  15. Smoking Bans, Leisure Time, and Subjective Well-being By Chadi, Cornelia
  16. Labor Supply under Participation and Hours Constraints By Kai-Uwe Müller; Michael Neumann; Katharina Wrohlich
  17. The Impact of Xenophobic Violence on the Integration of Immigrants By Steinhardt, Max F.
  18. Heterogeneous preferences and the individual change to alternative electricity tariffs By Ziegler, Andreas
  19. An up-to-date joint labor supply and child care choice model By Thor O. Thoresen; Trine E. Vattø
  20. Intertemporal income shifting around a large tax cut: The case of depreciations By Dobbins, Laura; Eichfelder, Sebastian; Hechtner, Frank; Hundsdoerfer, Jochen
  21. How Is Retail Rents Affected by Retail Mix? Evidence from the Netherlands By Song Zhang
  22. The Microeconomic Impacts of Employee Representatives: Evidence from Membership Thresholds By Pedro S. Martins
  23. Migrant STEM Entrepreneurs By Baum, Christopher F; Dastory, Linda; Lööf, Hans; Stephan, Andreas
  24. Social Security Incentives in Belgium: An Analysis of Four Decades of Change By Fraikin, Anne-Lore; Jousten, Alain; Lefèbvre, Mathieu

  1. By: Mense, Andreas; Michelsen, Claus; Kholodilin, Konstantin
    Abstract: This paper analyzes empirically the effects of a second generation rent control. We investigate the consequences of an uncommon policy intervention in the German housing market in 2015. We rely on a difference-and-differences setup, augmented with elements of a discontinuity-in-time design, to identify the causal impact of rent control on controlled and uncontrolled prices, land values, and the short-run supply of (rental) housing. We exploit an exception for newly built units and compare these units to young regulated units in order to measure the relative effect of the regulation on these groups. We are able to decompose this total effect into a negative effect on regulated and a positive effect on unregulated units, by exploiting spatio-temporal variation in treatment and the _ne-grained temporal variation of the data. We document positive effects on rents and prices of unregulated units and negative effects on regulated units. Intra-market variation is not available for identifying effects on land values and supply. We thus use propensity score weighting and trimming for selecting comparable treatment and control units. We find a robust positive impact of the regulation on land values that is qualitatively and quantitatively in line with the results for rents. We then document that the rent control regime led to more demolitions of small residential units (single- and two-family homes demolished with the purpose of making room for a new residential building), but we do not find an effect for larger buildings. We take this as a first sign of positive long-run supply effects. We also provide evidence that landlords more often chose to sell rather than let vacant rental units and that maintenance effort decreased under rent control. Overall, these results _t the predictions of a standard comparative-static representation of a second-generation rent control, which sheds a more favorable light on rent control.
    Keywords: Housing policy,rent control,rental housing,Germany
    JEL: D2 D4 R31
    Date: 2018
  2. By: Giesing, Yvonne; Battisti, Michele; Laurentsyeva, Nadzeya
    Abstract: This paper estimates the causal effect of a job search support programme on the employment of asylum seekers in Germany. Asylum seekers typically need longer than other migrants to be successful in the host country's labour market. Individual skills such as education and labour market experience certainly play an important role. In addition to that, the job search process itself requires skills and institutional knowledge, which may be scarce among some groups, e.g. among newly arrived immigrants, non-economic migrants in particular. We believe the role of these frictions is an aspect that is very much understudied. We attempt to provide a rigorous evaluation of a program that aims at easing matching frictions. In particular, we design a field experiment to evaluate whether easing matching frictions affects the labour market integration of recent refugees in Germany. We interview around 400 job-seeking refugees attending job-counseling sessions of a Munich-based NGO. The participants are then randomly allocated to the treatment group and the control group. For the treatment group, the NGO identifies potentially suitable employers and, upon agreement of a job-seeker, sends a CV to those employers. This treatment can isolate the effect of frictions concerning the job search process, while it has no effect on the underlying skills of participants. We track individuals over time by conducting follow-up surveys of both the treatment group and the control group every six months. Preliminary results based on a limited sample show positive and significant treatment effects on employment after twelve months. Working with the full dataset, we will investigate the heterogeneity of treatment effects across skill groups and legal status, and the possible tradeoff between early employment and match quality.
    Keywords: Refugees,labour market integration,matching frictions,field experiment
    JEL: F22 J61 J68
    Date: 2018
  3. By: Johansson , Fredrik (CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI)); Pyddoke, Roger (CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI))
    Abstract: We apply the method presented by Johansson (2018) to estimate a volume delay function and marginal cost for bicycle traffic on cycling paths separated from motorized traffic based on point measurements of speed and lateral positions from seven sites in Sweden. The results indicate that a quadratic volume – delay function fits the data well in the observed range of volumes, and that there are significant delays already at volumes far below the capacity due to the heterogeneity of the desired speed over the population. The total marginal cost of delay per unit flow is estimated to €9×10-5 h/km.
    Keywords: Bicycle traffic; Delay; Marginal cost
    JEL: R40 R41
    Date: 2018–10–15
  4. By: Oliwia Komada (Group for Research in Applied Economics (GRAPE)); Pawel Strzelecki (Narodowy Bank Polski; Instytut Statystyki i Demografii); Joanna Tyrowicz (Group for Research in Applied Economics (GRAPE); University of Warsaw; Institut für Arbeitsrecht und Arbeitsbeziehungen in der Europäischen Union (IAAEU); Institute of Labor Economics (IZA))
    Abstract: The reform introduced in Poland in 2009 substantially and abruptly reduced the number of workers eligible for early retirement. This paper evaluates the causal effects of this reform on labor force participation and exit to retirement. We use rich rotating panel from the Polish Labor Force Survey and exploit the discontinuity imposed by this reform. We find a statistically significant, but economically small discontinuity at the timing of the reform. The placebo test shows no similar effects in earlier or later quarters, but in a vast majority of specifications the discontinuity is not larger for the treated individuals, i.e. those whose occupation lost eligibility. We interpret these results as follows: the changes in the eligibility criteria were not instrumental in fostering the participation rates among the affected cohort, i.e. the immediate contribution to increased labor force participation of these cohorts is not economically large.
    Keywords: privatization, rushed privatization, efficiency, firm size, employment, performance
    JEL: P45 P52 C14 O16
    Date: 2018
  5. By: Marianne Tenand (PSE - Paris School of Economics, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Individuals having difficulties to perform the activities of daily living may benefit from public long-term care (LTC) support. France distinguishes between handicap benefits, accessible to individuals below 60, and dependence schemes, for individuals aged 60 and older. This paper assesses the effects of the age 60 threshold in the French LTC policies using the French Health and Disability Survey (HS 2008{2009) in two ways. First, we estimate the effect of being 60 and older on the probability to receive non-medical formal care and informal home care, controlling for a rich set of socio-demographic characteristics and age effects. Being a \dependent elderly" rather than a \handicapped adult" little affects the probability to receive home care; however, it increases formal care utilization and, to a lesser extent, decreases the probability to receive informal care. Second, we implement a Regression Discontinuity (RD) approach and provide evidence that the institutional age threshold affects living arrangements, as individuals above age 60 are more likely to be recorded as living in an institution. The architecture of LTC policies affects the way individuals' day-to-day difficulties are being compensated, thereby undermining horizontal equity in the use of formal LTC.
    Keywords: Long-term care,home care,public policies,regression discontinuity design,probit
    Date: 2018–10
  6. By: Rickard Engström; Söderberg Inga-Lill
    Abstract: The purpose of the paper is to investigate the effects of a number of broker characteristics – gender, age, previous experience as a real estate broker on the housing market as well as activity on a specific local business market – for different disciplinary sanctions issues by the The Swedish Estate Agents Inspectorate (FMI) between 2000 and 2016. FMI includes a Disciplinary Board, which consists of members appointed by the Government. The supervision entails ensuring that real estate brokers fulfil their obligations in accordance with the Swedish Estate Agents Act. The FMI's supervision can lead to a decision that the estate broker should be removed from the register or that the estate agent should be issued a disciplinary reminder or a warning. The reasons for the disciplinary sanctions differ and the study investigates factors possibly related to different types of complaints resulting in a disciplinary reminder or a warning.The study relies on data from FMI consisting of the collected decisions on sanctions issued 2000-2016. The number of registered brokers went from 4,574 to 6,910 during the period, and the complaints from 253 to 453. However, the number of disciplinary reminders, warnings or removal from the register stayed relative stable with an average of 65. Statistical methods are used to investigate the correlation between broker characteristics and the reasons for complaints leading to sanctions.
    Keywords: monitoring; Real Estate Broker
    JEL: R3
    Date: 2018–01–01
  7. By: Costa-Font, Joan (London School of Economics); Flèche, Sarah (CEP, London School of Economics)
    Abstract: We show that sleep deprivation exerts strong negative effects on mothers' labour market performance. To isolate exogenous variations in maternal sleep, we exploit unique variations in child sleep disruption using a UK panel dataset that follows mother-child pairs through time. We find that sleeping one hour less per night on average significantly decreases maternal labour force participation, the number of hours worked, and household income. We identify one mechanism driving the effects, namely the influence of maternal sleep on selection into full-time versus part-time work. Increased schedule flexibility for mothers with sufficient tenure mitigates the negative effects of sleep deprivation.
    Keywords: child sleep, sleep, maternal employment, working hours, workplace flexibility, ALSPAC
    JEL: J13 J22 I18 J28
    Date: 2018–08
  8. By: Linder, Anna (Health Economics Unit, Department of Clinical Science, Lund University); Spika, Devon (Department of Economics, Lund University); Gerdtham, Ulf-G. (Department of Economics, Lund University); Fritzell, Sara (Department of Public Health Science, Karolinska Institute, Sweden); Heckley, Gawain (Health Economics Unit, Department of Clinical Science, Lund University)
    Abstract: Abstract: Our aim is to study trends in mental ill-health and socioeconomic-related mental health inequalities over time in Sweden. We also make a first attempt at disentangling why we see such a development, by decomposing any changes in terms of changes in selected demographic and socioeconomic characteristics among the population. A secondary aim is to consider how different indicators for mental ill-health, as well as different measures of inequality, affect the conclusions we draw. Register data from the Swedish Interdisciplinary Panel and the Swedish Living Conditions Survey (administered by Statistics Sweden) are used to study trends in mental ill-health and mental health inequalities over the years 1994-2011. The study population comprises of working age individuals aged 31-64 living in Sweden. Four indicators of mental ill-health are used in the main analysis: self-reported anxiety, psychiatric inpatient diagnosis, psychiatric outpatient diagnosis and death by suicide. The results show that psychiatric diagnoses (in- and outpatient) increased substantially amongst 31 - 64 year olds between 1994 and 2011. Self-reported anxiety remained stable and suicides decreased. These results show that the different indicators of mental ill-health are not reflective of each other and how we measure mental ill-health largely affect the conclusions we draw. The mental ill-health indicators which suggest there is an increase in mental ill-health (in- and outpatient diagnosis) partly depend on attitudes, help-seeking behaviour and diagnostic practice. Thus, we cannot say that mental ill-health actually has increased. However, all mental ill-health indicators are becoming increasingly concentrated among women and among those not participating in the labour force, and psychiatric diagnoses are increasingly concentrated among those lowest educated. Income-related mental health inequalities in Sweden are substantial, and have increased significantly between 1994 and 2011, both regarding absolute and relative inequalities. More than 30 percent of self-reported anxiety and suicides, and half or all psychiatric in- and outpatient diagnoses, are found among the poorest fifth of the population. The decomposition results show that distributional changes in the population explain the increase in suicide inequality and partly explain the increase in psychiatric inpatient diagnosis inequality. However, overall, only small changes in the level of mental ill-health and mental health inequalities are explained by changes in the population characteristics we study.
    Keywords: Mental health; Inequality in health; Concentration index; Decomposition
    JEL: I10 I14
    Date: 2018–10–15
  9. By: Bachmann, Ronald; Cim, Merve; Green, Colin
    Abstract: The past four decades have witnessed dramatic changes in the structure of employment. In particular, the rapid increase in computational power has led to large-scale reductions in employment in jobs that can be described as intensive in routine tasks. These jobs have been shown to be concentrated in middle skill occupations. A large literature on labour market polarisation characterises and measures these processes at an aggregate level. However to date there is little information regarding the individual worker adjustment processes related to routine-biased technological change. Using an administrative panel data set for Germany, we follow workers over an extended period of time and provide evidence of both the short-term adjustment process and medium-run effects of routine task intensive job loss at an individual level. We initially demonstrate a marked, and steady, shift in employment away from routine, middle-skill, occupations. In subsequent analysis, we demonstrate how exposure to jobs with higher routine task content is associated with a reduced likelihood of being in employment in both the short term (after one year) and medium term (five years). This employment penalty to routineness of work has increased over the past four decades. More generally, we demonstrate that routine task work is associated with reduced job stability and more likelihood of experiencing periods of unemployment. However, these negative effects of routine work appear to be concentrated in increased employment to employment, and employment to unemployment transitions rather than longer periods of unemployment.
    Keywords: polarization,occupational mobility,worker flows,tasks
    JEL: J23 J24 J62 E24
    Date: 2018
  10. By: Jessen, Robin; Metzing, Maria; Rostam-Afschar, Davud
    Abstract: A common assumption in the optimal taxation literature is that the social planner maximizes a welfarist social welfare function with weights decreasing with income. However, high transfer withdrawal rates in many countries imply very low weights for the working poor in practice. We reconcile this puzzle by generalizing the optimal taxation framework by Saez (2002) to allow for alternatives to welfarism. We calculate weights of a social planner’s function as implied by the German tax and transfer system based on the concepts of welfarism, minimum absolute and relative sacrifice, as well as subjective justness. For the latter we use a novel question from the German Socio-Economic Panel. We find that the minimum absolute sacrifice principle is in line with social weights that decline with net income. Absolute subjective justness is roughly in line with decreasing social weights, which is reflected by preferences of men, West Germans, and supporters of the grand coalition parties.
    Keywords: Justness,Optimal Taxation,Income Redistribution,Equal Sacrifice,Inequality,Subjective Preferences
    JEL: D63 D60 H21 H23 I38
    Date: 2018
  11. By: Bossler, Mario; Oberfichtner, Michael; Schnabel, Claus
    Abstract: The effects of large minimum wage increases, like those planned in the UK and in some US states, are still unknown. We conduct a survey experiment that randomly assigns increases or decreases in minimum wages to about 6,000 plants in Germany and asks the personnel managers about their expectations concerning employment adjustments. We find that employment reacts asymmetrically to positive and negative changes in minimum wages. The larger the increase in the minimum wage is, the larger the expected reduction in employment. Employment adjustments are more pronounced in those industries and plants which are more strongly affected by the current minimum wage and in those plants that have neither collective agreements nor a works council. In contrast, employment is not found to increase if the minimum wage is reduced by about 10 percent. This mainly reflects that plants with works councils and collective agreements would not cut wages.
    Keywords: minimum wage,wage cuts,establishment survey,Germany
    JEL: J31 J23 D22
    Date: 2018
  12. By: Fulvio Castellacci (TIK Centre, University of Oslo); Davide Consoli (TIK Centre and INGENIO, Valencia); Artur Santoalha (TIK Centre, University of Oslo)
    Abstract: This paper argues that e-skills, namely capabilities associated with the use and development of digital technologies, enhance regions’ ability to imitate existing knowledge and to create new industrial paths. The empirical analysis focuses on the relationship between e-skills and technological diversification for a panel of European regions for the period 2001-2012. We construct novel indices of regional e-skill endowment distinguishing between basic users, professional users and expert developers of ICTs. The econometric results show that e-skills foster technological diversification dynamics in European regions, and that this effect is particularly strong for less developed regions.
    Date: 2018–10
  13. By: Joachim Merz
    Abstract: Quality of life and satisfaction with life are of particular importance for individuals as well as for society concerning the “demographic change” with now longer retirement periods. This study will contribute to the life satisfaction discussion and quantifies life satisfaction and pattern of explanation before and after such a prominent life cycle event, the entrance into retirement. In particular, with the individual longitudinal data and 33 waves of the Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) and the appropriate microeconometric causal fixed effects robust panel methods we ask and quantify if actual life satisfaction indeed is decreasing before retirement, is increasing at the entrance into retirement, and is decreasing then after certain periods back to a fore-going level. Thus, we ask if such an anticipation and adaptation pattern– as known from other prominent events – is also to discover for life satisfaction before and after retirement in Germany. Main result: Individual and family situation lift life satisfaction after retirement for many years, the (former) occupational situation, however, absorbs this effect both for pensioners and civil service pensioners. It remains only one period of improvement with close anticipation and adaptation at entering retirement but no furthermore significant change compared to pre-retirement life satisfaction. This holds for pensioners (German pension insurance, GRV) but there is no significant effect at all for civil service pensioners.
    Keywords: Retirement, life-satisfaction, happiness, retirement, anticipation and adaptation effects, fixed-effect regression, Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), Germany
    JEL: I31 J26 J14 J17 A13 C23
    Date: 2018
  14. By: Marco Di Cataldo; Vassilis Monastiriotis
    Abstract: With the prospective exit of the UK from the European Union, a crucial question is whether EU Structural Funds have been beneficial for the country and which aspects of Cohesion Policy should be maintained if EU funds are to be replaced. This paper addresses this question through a twofold investigation, assessing not only whether but also how EU funds have contributed to regional growth in the UK over three programming periods from 1994 to 2013. We document a significant and robust effect of Cohesion Policy in the UK, with higher proportions of Structural Funds associated to higher economic growth both on the whole and particularly in the less developed regions of the country. In addition, we show that the strategic orientation of investments also plays a distinct role for regional growth. While concentration of investments on specific pillars seems to have no direct growth effects, unless regions can rely on pre-existing competitive advantages in key development areas, we unveil clear evidence that targeting investments on specific areas of relative regional need has a significant and autonomous effect on growth. These findings have important implications for the design of regional policy interventions in Britain after Brexit.
    Keywords: EU Cohesion Policy, UK, Structural Funds, regional policy design, Brexit.
    JEL: R11 O18
    Date: 2018–06
  15. By: Chadi, Cornelia
    Abstract: During 2007 and 2008 smoking bans were gradually implemented in all of Germany’s sixteen federal states to prohibit smoking in bars, restaurants, and dance clubs. Aimed at reducing smoking and improving health, tobacco control policies are often controversially discussed as they entail potential side effects. We exploit regional variation to identify effects of smoking bans on life satisfaction and leisure time satisfaction. Difference-in-differences estimates reveal that predicted smokers who used to visit bars regularly are less satisfied with life and leisure time, following the enforcement of a smoking ban. We show that changes in use of leisure time likely explain these findings. On the contrary, predicted non-smokers who did not visit bars and restaurants frequently benefit from the smoking bans, as their satisfaction with leisure time increases. They show an increase in hours spent on free-time activities and are more likely to go out with smoking bans in effect.
    Keywords: Smoking bans,subjective well-being,leisure time,treatment effects
    JEL: D62 I18 I31 J22 D62 I18 I31 J22
    Date: 2018
  16. By: Kai-Uwe Müller; Michael Neumann; Katharina Wrohlich
    Abstract: The paper extends a static discrete-choice labor supply model by adding participation and hours constraints. We identify restrictions by survey information on the eligibility and search activities of individuals as well as actual and desired hours. This provides for a more robust identification of preferences and constraints. Both, preferences and restrictions are allowed to vary by and are related through observed and unobserved characteristics. We distinguish various restrictions mechanisms: labor demand rationing, working hours norms varying across occupations, and insufficient public childcare on the supply side of the market. The effect of these mechanisms is simulated by relaxing different constraints at a time. We apply the empirical frame- work to evaluate an in-work benefit for low-paid parents in the German institutional context. The benefit is supposed to increase work incentives for secondary earners. Based on the structural model we are able to disentangle behavioral reactions into the pure incentive effect and the limiting impact of constraints at the intensive and extensive margin. We find that the in-work benefit for parents substantially increases working hours of mothers of young children, especially when they have a low education. Simulating the effects of restrictions shows their substantial impact on employment of mothers with young children.
    Keywords: Labor supply, hours restrictions, involuntary unemployment, gender
    JEL: J22 J23 J16 J64
    Date: 2018
  17. By: Steinhardt, Max F. (Helmut Schmidt University, Hamburg)
    Abstract: Integration of immigrants is a two-way process involving immigrants and the host country society. An underexplored question is how events of xenophobic violence in the host country affect the integration of immigrants. For this purpose, I exploit a unique series of anti-immigrant attacks in the early 1990s in West Germany. Using a difference-in-differences matching strategy, I find that macro exposure to xenophobic violence has an impact on several dimensions of socio-economic integration of immigrants. In particular, it reduces subjective well-being and increases return intentions, while it reduces investment in German language skills among those staying in Germany. From a policy perspective, this paper shows that anti-immigrant violence can have indirect costs by impairing the integration of those immigrants who belong to the target group of xenophobic attacks.
    Keywords: immigration, integration, xenophobia, hate crimes
    JEL: A14 J15 J61
    Date: 2018–08
  18. By: Ziegler, Andreas
    Abstract: Based on data from a large-scale computer-based survey among more than 3700 German citizens, this paper empirically examines the determinants of the general change of electricity tariffs and the specific change to green tariffs. Our econometric analysis with binary probit and multinomial logit models reveals a strong relevance of behavioral factors and individual values. For example, patience (which is measured by an incentivized experiment that was included in the survey) is significantly positively correlated with general changes to alternative electricity tariffs. Furthermore, social preferences (also measured by an incentivized experiment) and trust have an even stronger significantly positive effect on the specific change to green electricity tariffs. Our estimation results also imply an important role of political identification, i.e. citizens with a left-wing orientation significantly more often switch an electricity tariff and an ecological political orientation has a strong significantly positive effect on the change to a green electricity tariff. Furthermore, several socio-demographic and socio-economic variables like age, gender, or household income are also relevant. The empirical analysis thus provides new explanation patterns for the phenome-non that only a small number of households regularly change their electricity tariff and specifically to green tariffs, although they have high stated preferences for such changes. Our insights suggest several directions for policy, but also for electricity providers, to in-crease these switching rates. For example, the high importance of trust attitudes for the change to green electricity tariffs suggests a transparency initiative of electricity providers to decrease reservations against green power.
    Keywords: Switching electricity tariffs,green electricity,heterogeneous preferences,behavioral factors,artefactual field experiment,individual values,econometric analysis
    JEL: C93 D12 Q41 Q42 Q50
    Date: 2018
  19. By: Thor O. Thoresen; Trine E. Vattø (Statistics Norway)
    Abstract: Norwegian parents of preschool children base their care choices on a completely different choice set from their predecessor. Now there is essentially only one type of nonparental care – center-based care – and on the parental side fathers take a more pivotal role in early childhood care. In the present paper we develop and estimate a joint labor supply and child care choice model that takes account of these new characteristics, on the assumption that this model points to current and future modeling directions for several other economies too. Estimations suggest that the average wage elasticity for mothers is 0.25–0.30.
    Keywords: family policy; child care; structural labor supply model
    JEL: J13 J22 C25
    Date: 2018–10
  20. By: Dobbins, Laura; Eichfelder, Sebastian; Hechtner, Frank; Hundsdoerfer, Jochen
    Abstract: A corporate tax rate cut provides an incentive for corporations to shift taxable income from years before the tax rate cut to post-reform years. Our study analyzes whether depreciations and write-offs are used to achieve intertemporal income shifting. Using a panel of German manufacturing firms, we test in a difference-in-differences setting whether firms reacted to the announced 2008 corporate tax rate cut of 10 percentage points by accumulating depreciation expenses in the pre-reform year. Our results suggest that depreciation expenses in 2007 are on average about 2.5% higher than in the other observation years. Our analysis also sheds light on heterogeneity in intertemporal income shifting across firms. We provide evidence for a weaker reaction of loss firms resulting from a lower tax incentive. By contrast, we find stronger intertemporal income shifting of large firms and especially firms with a relatively high share of new investments in the capital stock. While the first result is consistent with a higher cost-efficiency of tax planning of large firms, the second finding suggests that investments in the current year provide more discretion for (tax-induced) earnings management.
    Keywords: Tax planning,Intertemporal income shifting,Tax avoidance opportunity,Depreciations,Write-offs
    JEL: H25 M41
    Date: 2018
  21. By: Song Zhang
    Abstract: Shops are important facilities that provide people with goods and services. Just like many other commercial sectors, shops are inclined to concentrate or agglomerate within a certain area. Retail mix measures the diversity of shop types in a shopping district, which is an important factor that influences the attractivity of a shopping district. A proper retail mix improve the attractivity of a shopping district to consumers and thus improve sales turnover of shops in this shopping district. According to theory, this benefit brought by retail mix is expected to be capitalized into the rents of shops in corresponding shopping districts. However, we know little empirical evidence about how retail mix is going to affect the attractivity of shopping districts and thus rents of retail properties in these districts. We estimate the relationship between retail mix and retail rents by using a dataset containing information about rents of 10,808 retail transactions spreading from 1996 to 2011 in the Netherlands. We construct shopping districts based on the job density of retail sectors year by year and use Herfindahl Index to measure the level of retail mix in a certain shopping district. Our empirical results show that retail mix has a strong positive relationship with retail rent, after controlling for other variables. This result suggests the importance of building a shopping district with more diverse shop types and choices of goods and services.
    Keywords: Agglomeration Economies; retail mix; retail rent
    JEL: R3
    Date: 2018–01–01
  22. By: Pedro S. Martins
    Abstract: Employee representatives in firms are a potentially key but not yet studied source of the impact of unions and works councils. Their actions can shape multiple drivers of firm performance, including collective bargaining, strikes, and training. This paper examines the impact of union rep mandates by exploiting legal membership thresholds present in Portugal: for instance, while firms employing up to 49 union members are required to have one union rep, this increases to two (three) union reps for firms with 50 to 99 (100-199) union members. Drawing on matched employer-employee data on the unionised sector and regression discontinuity methods, we find that a one percentage point increase in the legal union rep/members ratio leads to an increase in firm performance of at least 7%. This result holds across multiple dimensions of firm performance and appears to be driven by increased training. However, we find no effects of union reps on firm-level wages, given the predominance of sectoral collective bargaining.
    Keywords: Firm Performance, Union Delegates, Collective Bargaining.
    JEL: J51 J31 L25
  23. By: Baum, Christopher F (Boston College, DIW Berlin, and Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies (CESIS)); Dastory, Linda (The Department of Industrial Economics and Management, Royal Institute of Technology); Lööf, Hans (Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies (CESIS), Royal Institute of Technology); Stephan, Andreas (Jönköping University, DIW Berlin, and Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies (CESIS))
    Abstract: STEM workers are considered to be key drivers for economic growth in the developed world. Migrant workers play an increasing role in the supply of this occupational category. We study the universe of STEM workers in the Swedish economy over the period 2003-2015 and find that migrants are less likely to form their own business, but those who are entrepreneurs earn income at least as large as that of their native-born counterparts. While the income differential for economic migrants may be partially explained by self-selection, the estimated effect is not significantly different between natives and refugee migrants.
    Keywords: STEM; migration; entrepreneurship; income; panel data
    JEL: F22 J44 J61 L26 O14
    Date: 2018–10–15
  24. By: Fraikin, Anne-Lore (University of Liège); Jousten, Alain (University of Liège); Lefèbvre, Mathieu (Université de Strasbourg)
    Abstract: The paper traces labor market reforms over the last four decades. It provides estimates of retirement incentives for a selected set of typical worker profiles across time and socio-economic groups and links these series to the labor market performance in Belgium. The results show that the numerous retirement and social security program reforms have had a marked impact on incentives at the micro level. At the aggregate level, results are less clear-cut given the extreme diversity of programs and features in the Belgian institutional context.
    Keywords: retirement, social security, pension, labor supply
    JEL: J21 J26 H31 I38
    Date: 2018–08

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NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.