nep-iue New Economics Papers
on Informal and Underground Economics
Issue of 2016‒11‒06
three papers chosen by
Catalina Granda Carvajal
Universidad de Antioquia

  1. Size and Development of the Shadow Economies of 157 Countries Worldwide: Updated and New Measures from 1999 to 2013 By Hassan, Mai; Schneider, Friedrich
  2. Décloisonner l’analyse des données pour appuyer la modernisation des douanes : une illustration à partir du Gabon By Joel CARIOLLE; Cyril CHALENDARD; Anne-Marie GEOURJON; Bertrand LAPORTE
  3. Características y determinantes de la informalidad laboral en México By Enrique Cuevas Rodríguez; Hugo Antolín de la Torre Ruiz; Saúl Oswaldo Regla Dávila

  1. By: Hassan, Mai (University of Marburg); Schneider, Friedrich (University of Linz)
    Abstract: This paper is a first attempt to study the size and development of the shadow economies of 157 countries over 1999 to 2013. Using a MIMIC model, we find that higher tax and regulatory burden, unemployment and self-employment rates are drivers of the shadow economy, meaning that an increase of these causal variables increases the shadow economy. Our result also confirms previous findings of Friedrich Schneider, Andreas Buehn and Claudia Montenegro (2010). The estimated average of informality of 157 countries around the world, including developing, eastern European, central Asian and high income OECD countries averaged over 1999 to 2013 is 33.77% of official GDP. A critical discussion about the size of these macro-estimates comes to the conclusion that most likely the "true" shadow economy of these countries is only 69% of their estimated macro-MIMIC-values.
    Keywords: shadow economies of 157 countries, quality of institutions, tax and regulatory burden, MIMIC model
    JEL: C51 C82 E26 E41 H11 H26
    Date: 2016–10
  2. By: Joel CARIOLLE (Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches sur le Développement International(CERDI)); Cyril CHALENDARD; Anne-Marie GEOURJON (Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches sur le Développement International(CERDI)); Bertrand LAPORTE (Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches sur le Développement International(CERDI))
    Abstract: Over the last few years, customs authorities in many developing countries have introduced modern risk management techniques relying on data mining and statistical scoring techniques. By demonstrating that risk analysis in customs may be a valuable tool to facilitate legal trade and combat fraud more effectively, these techniques have helped improving the performance of customs authorities. However, these risk management techniques may prove to be inefficient in a context of moral hazard and low-performance customs administration. One way to address this weakness is to rely on information gained from discrepancies in bilateral trade statistics. The analysis of discrepancies in bilateral trade statistics (or mirror analysis) is increasingly used to identify high-risk import operations and to estimate revenue losses. By comparing data on fraud recorded by the Gabon customs administration with discrepancies in Gabon’s bilateral trade data, this paper highlights the benefits for a customs administration of a joint analysis of fraud records and mirror trade statistics data, the latter being indicative of the fraud remaining to be detected. Such an analysis helps customs to target ex post audits on risky import declarations unadjusted by the frontline customs officer. Finally, we point that analyzing jointly data on fraud records and mirror trade statistics data may be useful to (i) identify imported products for which the fraud remaining to be detected is large and (ii) monitor the performance of customs inspections.
    Keywords: Customs risk analysis, Performance of customs authorities, Customs fraud, Tax evasion, Administrative data, Mirror analysis.
    JEL: F13 D73 K42 H83 H26
    Date: 2016–10
  3. By: Enrique Cuevas Rodríguez; Hugo Antolín de la Torre Ruiz; Saúl Oswaldo Regla Dávila
    Abstract: Desde el año 2012 el Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía de México (INEGI), adoptó el enfoque de informalidad laboral y lo integró a mediciones realizadas con información captada por la Encuesta Nacional de Ocupación y Empleo (ENOE). En este documento se estudian las características individuales de los trabajadores informales bajo el enfoque de informalidad laboral citado. Entre estas características se incluyeron el género (sexo) del trabajador, edad, escolaridad y ubicación geográfica según nivel de marginación de la entidad federativa en donde labora. Se encontró que la informalidad laboral está asociada a condiciones de alta vulnerabilidad o precarización socio demográfica del trabajador, tales como: baja o nula escolaridad, alta marginación, mujeres en general, sobre todo aquellas con hijos pequeños, jóvenes en general y su extremo, los mayores de 65 años. Se mostró además que la informalidad laboral funge como mecanismo para mantener bajas las tasas de desocupación, por lo que se presenta una especie de trade-off –sobre todo en épocas de crisis- entre esas dos alternativas de participación. Se utilizaron métodos econométricos (análisis probit) con microdatos de la ENOE de 2015.
    Keywords: informalidad laboral, trabajador informal, tasa de desocupación, México
    JEL: J10 J46 J18
    Date: 2016–10–01

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