nep-eur New Economics Papers
on Microeconomic European Issues
Issue of 2022‒11‒28
24 papers chosen by
Giuseppe Marotta
Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia

  1. Gender inequalities at work in Southern Europe By Ren, Yijun; Guglielmi, Alessandra; Maestripieri, Lara
  2. Immigrants and Trade Union Membership; Does Integration into Society and Workplace Play a Moderating Role? By Fenet Jima Bedaso; Uwe Jirjahn; Lazlo Goerke
  3. Does Part-Time Mothering Help Get a Job? The Role of Shared Custody in Women’s Employment By Carole Bonnet; Bertrand Garbinti; Anne Solaz
  4. Health Shocks and Housing Downsizing: How Persistent Is 'Ageing in Place'? By Joan Costa-i-Font; Cristina Vilaplana-Prieto
  5. The Effects of Financial Aid on Graduation and Labor Market Outcomes: New Evidence from Matched Education-Labor Data By Veronica Rattini
  6. "The Double Dividend of Training" - Labor Market Effects of Work-Related Continuous Education in Switzerland By Stefan Denzler; Jens Ruhose; Stefan C. Wolter
  7. Contagious economic failure? Discourses around “zombie firms” in Covid-19 ridden Germany and Italy By Hilmar, Till; Paolillo, Rocco; Sachweh, Patrick
  8. Does Cooperation among Institutions Foster Migrants Inclusion? Evidence from a Case-Study on Financial Literacy in Italy By Samuel Nocito; Alessandra Venturini
  9. German financial state aid during COVID-19 pandemic: Higher impact among digitalized self-employed By Bertschek, Irene; Block, Jörn; Kritikos, Alexander; Stiel, Caroline
  10. Do manufacturing plants respond to exogenous changes in electricity prices? Evidence from administrative micro-data By von Graevenitz, Kathrine; Rottner, Elisa
  11. The impact of the EU General Data Protection Regulation on innovation in firms By Blind, Knut; Niebel, Crispin Miles; Rammer, Christian
  12. Psychological well-being and the tendency to follow official recommendations against COVID-19: A U-shaped relationship? By Bénédicte Apouey; Rémi Yin; Fabrice Etilé; Alan Piper; Claus Vögele
  13. Why life gets better after age 50, for some: mental well-being and the social norm of work By Coen van de Kraats; Titus Galama; Maarten Lindeboom
  14. Starting off on the right foot: Language learning classes and the educational success of immigrant children By Höckel, Lisa Sofie; Schilling, Pia
  15. Firm Sorting and Spatial Inequality By Ilse Lindenlaub; Ryungha Oh; Michael Peters
  16. Mental Health Literacy, Beliefs and Demand for Mental Health Support among University Students By Michelle Acampora; Francesco Capozza; Vahid Moghani
  17. Childhood neighborhoods and cause-specific adult mortality in Sweden 1939-2015 By Hedefalk, Finn; van Dijk, Ingrid K; Dribe, Martin
  18. What is productive investment? Insights from firm-level data for the United Kingdom By Karmakar, Sudipto; Melolinna, Marko; Schnattinger, Philip
  19. Firm Consolidation and Labor Market Outcomes By Sabien Dobbelaere; Grace McCormack; Daniel Prinz; Sándor Sóvágó
  20. The Heterogeneous Response of Real Estate Asset Prices to a Global Shock By Heinger, Sandro; Koeniger, Winfried; Lechner, Michael
  21. System Justification Beliefs and Life Satisfaction. The role of inequality aversion and support for redistribution. By Teresa María García Muñoz; Juliette Milgram Baleix; Omar Odeh Odeh
  22. Costs and benefits of an Individual Learning Account (ILA): A simulation analysis for the Netherlands By Henri Bussink; Bas ter Weel
  23. Robots, Meaning, and Self-Determination By Nikolova, Milena; Cnossen, Femke; Nikolaev. Boris
  24. Wealth, gifts, and estate planning at the end of life By David Sturrock; Stefan Groot; Jan Möhlmann

  1. By: Ren, Yijun; Guglielmi, Alessandra; Maestripieri, Lara
    Abstract: Despite a long-term trend towards reduction, the gender gap in employment keeps standing in Southern Europe. Numerous potential causes have been individuated, such as the household configuration, the human capital of the women, or the institutions that regulate the labour market. Less is know about the role of the locality. This paper explores what covariates influence women’s access to labour markets, and whether it is unevenly distributed across different countries and regions in the Southern Europe. The analysis is based on the dataset round 9 (2018) from the European Social Survey. We focus on the following countries available in the dataset: Cyprus, Italy, Spain and Portugal. Italy and Spain are further differentiated into vulnerable and affluent regions according to the regional GDP in 2018. We apply a regression model for the binary response that is the indicator of having been doing paid work for the last seven days of each individual in the sample. We adopt the Bayesian approach, in order to derive conclusions via a whole probability distribution, i.e., the posterior of all parameters, given data. The statistical goal is the selection of the most important covariates for access to labour market, focusing on gender differences. Our analysis finds out that the individual characteristics are mediated by household composition. Even though a higher education increases women’s employment, the presence of children and having an employed partner reduce such involvement. Moreover, a larger gender gap is detected in vulnerable regions rather than in affluent ones, especially in Italy.
    Date: 2022–11–03
  2. By: Fenet Jima Bedaso (Institute for Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the EC, University of Trier); Uwe Jirjahn (University of Trier, GLO, and IZA); Lazlo Goerke (Institute for Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the EC, University of Trier, IZA Bonn and CESifo Muenchen)
    Abstract: We hypothesize that incomplete integration into the workplace and society implies that immigrants are less likely to be union members than natives. Incomplete integration makes the usual mechanism for overcoming the collective action problem less effective. Using data from the Socio-Economic Panel, our empirical analysis confirms a unionization gap for first-generation immigrants in Germany. Importantly, the analysis shows that the immigrant-native gap in union membership indeed depends on immigrants' integration into the workplace and society. The gap is smaller for immigrants working in firms with a works council and having social contacts with Germans. Our analysis also confirms that the gap is decreasing in the years since arrival in Germany.
    Keywords: Union membership, migration, works council, social contacts with natives, years since arrival
    JEL: J15 J52 J61
  3. By: Carole Bonnet (INED - Institut national d'études démographiques); Bertrand Garbinti (INED - Institut national d'études démographiques); Anne Solaz (INED - Institut national d'études démographiques)
    Abstract: Though child shared physical custody arrangements after divorce are much more frequent and parents who use it more diverse in many European countries, little is known about their economic consequences for parents. By relaxing family time constraints, does shared custody help divorced mothers return to or stay on work more easily? Since lone mothers are one of the least-employed groups, and they face high unemployment rates, the type of child custody arrangement adopted after divorce is of particular interest for their employability. This article analyses to what extent the type of child custody arrangement affects mothers' labour market patterns after divorce.Using a large sample of divorcees from an exhaustive French administrative income tax database, and taking advantage of the huge territorial discrepancies observed in the proportion of shared custody, we correct for the possible endogeneity of shared custody. Results show that not repartnered mothers with shared custody arrangements are 24 percentage points more likely to work one year after divorce compared to those having sole custody, while no significant effect is found for repartnered mothers. Among lone mothers, we also highlight huge heterogeneous effects: larger positive effects are observed for previously inactive women, for those belonging to the lowest income quintiles before divorce, for those with a young child, and for those who have three or more children. Thus, shared physical custody arrangements may reduce work–family conflict by diminishing childcare expenses and enlarge the possibilities to find a suitable job because of more relaxed time constraints for lone mothers.
    Keywords: Shared custody,Employment,Divorce,Lone mother,Separation,Child arrangement
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Joan Costa-i-Font; Cristina Vilaplana-Prieto
    Abstract: Individual preferences for ‘ageing in place’ (AIP) in old age are not well understood. One way to test the strength of AIP preference is to investigate the effect of health shocks on residential mobility to smaller size or value dwellings, which we refer to as ‘housing downsizing’. This paper exploits more than a decade worth of longitudinal data to study older people’s housing decisions across a wide range of European countries. We estimate the effect of health shocks on the probability of different proxies for housing downsizing (residential mobility, differences in home value, home value to wealth ratio), considering the potential endogeneity of the health shock to examine the persistence of AIP preferences. Our findings suggest that consistently with the AIP hypothesis, every decade of life, the likelihood of downsizing decreases by two percentage points (pp). However, the experience of a health shock partially reverts such culturally embedded preference for AIP by a non-negligible magnitude on residential mobility (9pp increase after the onset of a degenerative illness, 9.3pp for other mental disorders and 6.5pp for ADL), home value to wealth ratio and the new dwelling’s size (0.6 and 1.2 fewer rooms after the onset of a degenerative illness or a mental disorder). Such estimates are larger in northern and central European countries.
    Keywords: ageing in place, housing downsizing, health shocks at old age, Europe, residential mobility, mental degenerative mental illness, mental disorder
    JEL: I18 G51 J61 R31
    Date: 2022
  5. By: Veronica Rattini
    Abstract: Financial aid decreases the cost of acquiring additional education. By using Italian administrative and survey data on financial aid recipients and exploiting sharp discontinuities in the amount of aid received, this paper identifies the causal effect of aid generosity on college performance and labor market outcomes. The results show that students with a higher cost of college earn more credits each year than those receiving higher financial aid. This gap generates a significant difference in the overall graduation time. No differences emerge in the GPA level or in the probability of working during college. After graduation, lower-aid recipients have a similar probability of continuing to study and of working after college as higher-aid beneficiaries. However, they secure a better job match in terms of working hours and payment but also in terms of skills matching.
    Keywords: human capital, financial aid, labor market outcomes, regression discontinuity design
    JEL: H75 I22 I26 J24
    Date: 2022
  6. By: Stefan Denzler; Jens Ruhose; Stefan C. Wolter
    Abstract: This paper presents the first longitudinal estimates of the effect of work-related training on labor market outcomes in Switzerland. Using a novel dataset that links official census data on adult education to longitudinal register data on labor market outcomes, we apply a regression-adjusted matched difference-in-differences approach with entropy balancing to account for selection bias and sorting on gains. We find that training participation increases yearly earnings and reduces the risk of unemployment two years after the treatment. However, the effects are heterogeneous as to gender, age, education, and regional labor market context. The gains are highest for middle-aged men with formal vocational education working in either depressed or booming labor markets.
    Keywords: continuous education, wages, unemployment, entropy balancing, Switzerland
    JEL: I21 I26 J24 M53
    Date: 2022
  7. By: Hilmar, Till; Paolillo, Rocco (Jacobs University); Sachweh, Patrick
    Abstract: As the spread of Covid-19 hit societies around the world, governments stepped up to contain the pandemic’s economic shock. Governments saved businesses and stabilized employment through extensive fiscal relief packages. In this paper, we analyze public debates around zombie firms – businesses that are unprofitable and/or unable to pay interests on their debt but still receive public aid. In popular culture, zombies are contagious creatures that threaten the “healthy” order of society; in economic discourse, we suggest, the zombie trope is no less rich in cultural meaning and metaphor. Specifically, we are interested in how narrative meaning around zombie firms can be employed to describe the role of the state and the role of the market in addressing economic crises and economic transformations. We comparatively explore how zombie firms are discussed in two societies, Germany and Italy, during the first two years of the Covid-19 pandemic. Combining computational and qualitative text analysis, we investigate how newspapers on the left and on the right imbue this term with meaning. Our results show that German and Italian debates are more similar than expected. Right-leaning newspapers in both countries depict zombie firms as a problem of debt, which is seen as caused and aggravated by undesired state intervention in market dynamics. Left-leaning newspapers articulate more nuanced positions: while German left-leaning newspapers tend to reject the trope of zombie firms and defend pandemic state interventions such as short-time work programs, their Italian counterparts also argue for the need for such policies but associate zombie firms with doubts about the efficiency of state support in the long term.
    Date: 2022–11–03
  8. By: Samuel Nocito (Department of Social Sciences and Economics, Sapienza University of Rome); Alessandra Venturini (Department of Economics and Statistics “Cognetti de Martiis”, University of Turin)
    Abstract: We investigate an Italian case study (project “Welcome-ED”) of cooperation between private institutions and local migrant centers - administratively defined as cooperatives, non-profit associations, and public educational centers - to promote the inclusion of migrants through the provision of a financial literacy course. We find that the course has effectively improved migrants’ financial literacy and it also mitigates initial differences in knowledge due to individual characteristics. Moreover, we find heterogeneous effects among different local center types with stronger improving effects for individuals coming from cooperatives and non-profit associations. This result strengthens the importance of the cooperation between private institutions, cooperatives, and local associations to achieve inclusion policy goals.
    Keywords: D14, L30, J15, P13.
    JEL: Q12 O12 C31 C3
    Date: 2022–11
  9. By: Bertschek, Irene; Block, Jörn; Kritikos, Alexander; Stiel, Caroline
    Abstract: In response to strong revenue and income losses that a large share of the self-employed faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, the German federal government introduced a €50bn emergency aid program. Based on real-time online-survey data comprising more than 20,000 observations, we analyze the impact of this program on the subjective survival probability. In particular, we investigate how the digitalization level of the self-employed influences the program's effectiveness. Employing propensity score matching, we find that the emergency aid program had only moderately positive effects on the confidence of the self-employed to survive the crisis. However, the self-employed whose businesses were highly digitalized, benefitted much more from the state aid compared to those whose businesses were less digitalized. This holds true only for those self-employed in advanced digitalization stages, who started the digitalization processes already before the crisis. Moreover, taking a regional perspective, we find suggestive evidence that the quality of the regional broadband infrastructure matters in the sense that it increases the effectiveness of the emergency aid program. Our findings show the interplay between governmental support programs, the digitalization levels of entrepreneurs, and the regional digital infrastructure. The study helps public policy to increase the impact of crisis-related policy instruments.
    Keywords: Self-Employment,Emergency Aid,Treatment Effects,COVID-19,Entrepreneurship,Digitalization,Resilience
    JEL: C14 H43 L25 L26 J68 O33
    Date: 2022
  10. By: von Graevenitz, Kathrine; Rottner, Elisa
    Abstract: Climate policy often implies increasing energy prices. Due to incomplete regulation across the globe, concerns about their competitiveness and employment effects play an important role in the policy debate. Using micro-data on electricity network charges and the official census data for Germany, we study the impact of rising electricity costs on plant performance in German Manufacturing. Electricity network charges are determined through regulation in Germany and therefore exogenous to manufacturing plants, while making up a substantial share of final electricity prices. Our estimates imply a negative own-price elasticity of electricity of -0.4 to -0.6 in the short-run: A one cent increase in average network charges leads to a decrease in electricity procurement of roughly 3 %. There is suggestive evidence that this elasticity of response is decreasing over time, in line with nonlinearly increasing marginal abatement costs. Generally, we do not find significant effects on revenues, investments or capital stocks.
    Keywords: Network charges,Electricity Use,Firm Performance,Climate Policy,Manufacturing
    JEL: D22 L60 Q41 Q48
    Date: 2022
  11. By: Blind, Knut; Niebel, Crispin Miles; Rammer, Christian
    Abstract: In May 2018, a new regulation by the European Commission on data protection came into force, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It requires many firms to update their data protection strategy. It may also complicate different types of data usage, particularly related to data on individuals. In the literature, there is little evidence and no consensus on whether this new privacy regulation is beneficial or detrimental to innovation. This study provides empirical evidence on the impact of the GDPR on innovation activities in firms. Exploiting panel data from the German innovation survey, a difference-in-difference analysis shows that the GDPR stimulated additional innovation activity while shifting the focus of innovation away from radical and towards more incremental innovation. This holds for both firms that report that the GDPR complicated their innovation efforts, and for the much smaller group of firms that report that the GDPR facilitated their innovation activities. Finally, larger and older firms experience higher increases in their turnover with incremental innovation compared to smaller and younger firms.
    Keywords: General Data Protection Regulation,Innovation,Community Innovation Survey,Difference-in-difference estimation
    JEL: O31 O38 C22 L51
    Date: 2022
  12. By: Bénédicte Apouey (PSE - Paris School of Economics - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Rémi Yin (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg]); Fabrice Etilé (PSE - Paris School of Economics - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Alan Piper (Leeds University Business School - University of Leeds); Claus Vögele (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])
    Abstract: Using nationally representative panel data on 7,766 individuals (22,878 observations), we investigate the association between several well-being indicators (depression, anxiety, stress, and loneliness) and the general tendency to follow official recommendations regarding selfprotection against COVID-19, in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Sweden over the course of four data collection waves. Employing a flexible specification that allows the correlation to be non-monotonic, we find a U-shaped relationship, in which transitions to low and high levels of psychological well-being are associated with higher overall compliance, while transitions to medium levels of psychological well-being are associated with less compliance. Moreover, anxiety, stress, and loneliness levels at baseline also have a U-shaped effect on following the recommendations later (i.e., recommendations are followed best by those with lowest and highest levels of anxiety, stress, and loneliness at baseline, while following the recommendations is lowest for those with moderate levels of these variables). These U shapes are in contrast to previous studies which report monotonic relationships between various measures of mental health and compliance, or ambiguous results. Additionally, we observe a U-shaped correlation between the well-being indicators and a number of specific behaviours (including washing hands and mask wearing). Importantly, most of these specific behaviours play a role in the general tendency to follow recommendations. Finally, we uncover the role of gender composition effects in some of our results. While variations in depression and stress are negatively correlated with variations in overall compliance for males, the association is positive for females. The relation in the full sample (composed of males and females) will reflect first the negative slope for males and then the positive slope for females, explaining the U shape
    Keywords: Psychological well-being,Adherence,Compliance,COVID-19,Longitudinal research design,Europe
    Date: 2022–10
  13. By: Coen van de Kraats (Erasmus University Rotterdam); Titus Galama (University of Southern California); Maarten Lindeboom (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam)
    Abstract: We provide evidence that the social norm (expectation) of work has a detrimental causal effect on the mental well-being of individuals not able to abide by it. Using SHARE data on men aged 50+ from 10 European countries, we identify the social norm of work effect in a difference-in-differences (DiD) model that compares mental well-being scores of unemployed / disabled individuals (the treatment group) with those of employed / retired individuals (the control group) at varying levels of the fraction of retirees of comparable age. The initial mental well-being gap at age 50 is large, with unemployed / disabled men experiencing lower levels of mental well-being. Beyond age 50, the mental well-being of unemployed and disabled men improves as peers of comparable age retire, and full convergence occurs generally at an age that is slightly above the normal retirement age, when everyone has retired. We estimate the social norm of work effect to be comparable to the benefit of tertiary education, the detriment of being widowed, and the benefit of having a household income of 2,000,000 Euros. We explore income-security and leisure-coordination channels as alternative interpretations of the effect to show that these cannot explain our findings.
    Keywords: mental well-being, social norm of work, retirement institutions
    JEL: I10 I31 J60 D63
    Date: 2022–11–13
  14. By: Höckel, Lisa Sofie; Schilling, Pia
    Abstract: This study is the first empirical analysis to identify the causal effect of a separate preparatory language learning class on the academic success of newly immigrated primary school-aged children in comparison to their direct integration into regular classrooms. Employing unique administrative panel data from the German federal state Hamburg between 2013 and 2019, we use the quasi-random allocation of refugee children to neighborhoods and therewith schools to measure the effect of the two educational integration models on standardized test scores and the probability of attending an academic track in secondary school. Our results show that primary school-aged refugees who visit a preparatory class perform significantly worse in standardized test scores in fifth grade. The negative effect is particularly strong for Math and German. They further have a slightly lower probability to attend the academic track. Overall, our results indicate that integrating newly immigrated children directly into regular classrooms fosters their academic achievement more than schooling them first in preparatory classes with a focus on language learning.
    Keywords: Academic achievement,education economics,language skills,migration,integration policy
    JEL: I24 I21 J13 J15
    Date: 2022
  15. By: Ilse Lindenlaub; Ryungha Oh; Michael Peters
    Abstract: We study the importance of firm sorting for spatial inequality. If productive locations are able to attract the most productive firms, then firm sorting acts as an amplifier of spatial inequality. We develop a novel model of spatial firm sorting, in which heterogeneous firms first choose a location and then hire workers in a frictional local labor market. Firms' location choices are guided by a fundamental trade-off: Operating in productive locations increases output per worker, but sharing a labor market with other productive firms makes it hard to poach and retain workers, and hence limits firm size. We show that sorting between firms and locations is positive—i.e., more productive firms settle in more productive locations—if firm and location productivity are complements and labor market frictions are sufficiently large. We estimate our model using administrative data from Germany and find that highly productive firms indeed sort into the most productive locations. In our main application, we quantify the role of firm sorting for wage differences between East and West Germany, which reveals that firm sorting accounts for 17%-27% of the West-East wage gap.
    JEL: E20 E23 E24 E25 J30 J61 J63
    Date: 2022–11
  16. By: Michelle Acampora (University of Zurich); Francesco Capozza (Erasmus University of Rotterdam); Vahid Moghani (Erasmus University of Rotterdam)
    Abstract: This paper assesses the impact of a mental health literacy intervention on the demand for mental health support among university students. We run a field experiment with 2,978 university students from one of the largest Dutch universities. The literacy intervention provides information on the benefits of care-seeking and its potential returns in terms of academic performance. The intervention increases the willingness-to-pay for a mental health app among male respondents. Moreover, the information increases (decreases) the demand for information about coaching (psychological) services. We document that this substitution is concentrated among students with low to moderate anxiety/depressive symptoms, while the students with severe symptoms increase their demand for coaching without reducing their demand for psychological services. An increased perceived effectiveness of low-intensity therapy is likely to be the mechanisms. In a follow-up survey three weeks later, we find that the treated female respondents have improved their mental health. Finally, a model of mental health investment decisions in the presence of (self-)image concerns rationalizes the results.
    Keywords: Mental Health Literacy, Demand for Mental Health Support, Beliefs, Stigma, Survey Experiment
    JEL: C93 D83 D91 I12 I31
    Date: 2022–11–13
  17. By: Hedefalk, Finn; van Dijk, Ingrid K; Dribe, Martin
    Abstract: The socioeconomic health gradient has widened since the mid-21st century, but the role of childhood neighborhoods remains underexplored. Most neighborhood studies on health are cross-sectional, and longitudinal research is lacking. We analyze how socioeconomic neighborhood conditions in childhood influence cause-specific deaths in adulthood. We use uniquely detailed geocoded longitudinal microdata for the Swedish town of Landskrona, 1939-1967, linked to Swedish national registers, 1968-2015. We measure neighborhood SES by social class and use dynamic sizes of individual neighborhoods. Cox proportional hazards models are employed to estimate the impact of neighbor’s social class in childhood (ages 1-17) on mortality in ages 40-69. We control for class origin, class in adulthood, schools, and physical neighborhood characteristics. The class of the nearby, same-age, childhood neighbors had a lasting effect on male all-cause and preventable, but not non-preventable, mortality. Men who grew up with having 10% more children from white-collar families as close-proximity neighbors had an 8% lower mortality risk due to preventable causes of death in adulthood. The mortality for women was not affected by their childhood neighbors, although both a lower adult class and class origin increased their mortality. Because preventable causes of death are linked to lifestyle factors, this study suggests that childhood neighborhood peers had a strong and lasting influence on the health behavior of men growing up before the health gradient was fully established. Hence, our applied life-course perspective on childhood neighborhoods is crucial to better understand the mortality differentials by SES.
    Date: 2022–10–14
  18. By: Karmakar, Sudipto (Bank of England); Melolinna, Marko (Bank of England); Schnattinger, Philip (Bank of England)
    Abstract: This paper studies the effects of different types of investment and levels of debt on productivity in the UK, using firm-level data. We set out a stylised model of a dynamic firm profit-maximisation problem, and augment this model with an external financing option in a novel way. We use the model to illustrate why productivity-enhancing investment differs from other uses of company funds in terms of its effects on total factor productivity (TFP), and how these positive effects can be stronger for firms that have higher indebtedness. We then examine the issue empirically with data on listed firms in the UK. Our main finding is that intangibles investment are a good proxy for productivity-enhancing investment, as they have a positive effect on TFP, and in those firms that have high debt and high levels of intangibles, these effects are even more pronounced. On the other hand, we find no consistent evidence of positive TFP effects for other uses of funds, like tangible capital expenditure or dividends and equity buybacks. The effects of debt on TFP are smaller and more tenuous, but we find no evidence of a negative TFP effect of debt in firms that have high levels of intangibles intensity.
    Keywords: Dynamic programming; firm-level productivity; intangible assets; panel regression
    JEL: C61 D22 D24 O30
    Date: 2022–07–15
  19. By: Sabien Dobbelaere (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam); Grace McCormack (University of Southern California); Daniel Prinz (World Bank); Sándor Sóvágó (University of Groningen)
    Abstract: Using rich administrative data from the Netherlands, we study the consequences of firm consolidation for workers. For workers at acquired firms, takeovers are associated with a 8.5% drop in employment at the consolidated firm and a 2.6% drop in total labor income. These effects are persistent even four years later. We show that the primary mechanism for this job loss is labor restructuring at consolidating firms. Specifically, workers with higher-than-expected pay relative to their human capital and workers with skills that are likely already present at acquirers are less likely to be retained.
    Keywords: Takeovers, labor market outcomes, labor restructuring
    JEL: G34 J2 J3 M51
    Date: 2022–11–13
  20. By: Heinger, Sandro; Koeniger, Winfried; Lechner, Michael
    Abstract: We estimate the transmission of the pandemic shock in 2020 to prices in the residential and commercial real estate market by causal machine learning, using new granular data at the municipal level for Germany. We exploit differences in the incidence of Covid infections or short-time work at the municipal level for identification. In contrast to evidence for other countries, we find that the pandemic had only temporary negative effects on rents for some real estate types and increased asset prices of real estate particularly in the top price segment of commercial real estate.
    Keywords: Real estate, Asset prices, Rents, Covid pandemic, Short-time work, Affordability crisis
    JEL: E21 E22 G12 G51 R21 R31
    Date: 2022–11
  21. By: Teresa María García Muñoz (University of Granada, Departamento de Métodos Cuantitativos.); Juliette Milgram Baleix (Universidad de Granada, Departamento de Teoría e Historia Económica); Omar Odeh Odeh (Universidad de Granada, Departamento de Teoría e Historia Económica)
    Abstract: This study tests the effect of the palliative function of system justification beliefs on life satisfaction with both aversion and support for redistribution, in serial, as mediators among Europeans. We use 30900 observations for 27 countries from the ninth wave of the European Social Survey. Consistent with predictions, individuals, who have higher system justification, are less inequality adverse, exhibit lower support for redistributive policies, and have higher life satisfaction. Serial mediation analysis reveals a significant mediating effect of inequality aversion and support for redistribution in the sequential positive nexus between system justification and life satisfaction. We also investigate whether the palliative effect of system justification holds in more (un)equal societies and whether it holds (un)equally among various social groups. The results show a non-significant difference between unequal and equal countries regarding the palliative function. Using OLS regressions, we find that individuals with low social status benefit more from the palliative function than those with high social status, especially for those in more equal countries.
    Keywords: System Justification Theory, Subjective Well-Being, Aversion for Inequality, Palliative Function.
    JEL: D63 I3
    Date: 2022–10–27
  22. By: Henri Bussink (SEO Amsterdam Economics); Bas ter Weel (University of Amsterdam)
    Abstract: This study analyses costs and benefits of a public-private funded individual learning account (ILA) for the labour force in the Netherlands. We consider an ILA that is funded by subsidies targeted at low- and medium-educated workers and co-funded by training levies as a share of the wage bill. We simulate two alternative steady-state scenarios about the uptake of resources and increase in training activity, using a lifecycle model of human capital investments. We derive predictions for gross earnings, income inequality and costs (training subsidies and tax deductions) and benefits (tax revenues and fewer unemployment benefits). Our results show how the balance of costs and benefits depends on the interplay between take-up rates, returns to training and the deadweight loss of subsidizing an ILA for the whole labour force. Our model and results contribute to policy trade-offs about the introduction of ILA’s to stimulate the resilience of the labour fo
    Keywords: Human capital investments, Individual learning accounts, Lifelong learning
    JEL: J24 J33
    Date: 2022–11–13
  23. By: Nikolova, Milena; Cnossen, Femke; Nikolaev. Boris
    Abstract: We are the first to examine the impact of robotization on work meaningfulness and autonomy, competence, and relatedness, which are key for motivation and human flourishing at work. Using worker-level data from 13 industries in 20 European countries and OLS and instrumental variables estimations, we find that industry-level robotization harms all work quality aspects except competence. We also examine the moderating role of routine and cognitive tasks, skills and education, and age and gender. While we do not find evidence of moderation concerning work meaningfulness in any of our models, noteworthy differences emerge for autonomy. For instance, workers with repetitive and monotonous tasks drive the negative effects of robotization on autonomy, while social tasks and working with computers - a tool that provides worker independence - help workers derive autonomy and competence in industries and jobs that adopt robots. In addition, robotization increases the competence perceptions of men. Our results highlight that by deteriorating the opportunities to derive meaning and self-determination out of work, robotization will impact the present and the future of work above and beyond its consequences for employment and wages.
    Keywords: work meaningfulness,self-determination theory,robotization,automation
    JEL: J01 J30 J32 J81 I30 I31 M50
    Date: 2022
  24. By: David Sturrock (University College London and Institute for Fiscal Studies); Stefan Groot (Rabobank); Jan Möhlmann (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)
    Abstract: We show that gifts made to heirs before death are substantial and highly responsive to taxation. Therefore, characterising them and understanding their determinants is crucial for tax design. We use high-quality, intergenerationally-linked data on wealth, gifts, and medical expenses from the Netherlands. Exploiting variation in the timing of death, we find that the wealthiest half of singles (including widows) with children transfer over 10% of their wealth to their children in anticipation of death. Giving is highly sensitive to how heavily gifts are taxed, relative to bequests. Using bunching estimation and exploiting the 2010 reform to gift taxation, we estimate Frisch elasticities of gifts to the net-of-tax rate between 9, for those giving around 27,000 euro, and 1, for those giving around 125,000 euro. Giving is concentrated among those singles who have grandchildren. However, the amount transferred does not vary substantively with the number of heirs and, within families, only slightly larger gifts are made to children who are less-wealthy or who have more children. These findings conflict with the predictions of a fully altruistic model of bequests. Rather, they are consistent with giving being driven by a warm-glow bequest motive that depends on net-of-tax transfers made and is operative for those with grandchildren.
    JEL: D12 D14 D64 H26
    Date: 2022–11

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