nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2012‒09‒16
five papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Heterogeneity in the Relationship between Happiness and Age: Evidence from the German Socio-Economic Panel By Gregori Baetschmann
  2. Wages and Informality in Developing Countries By Costas Meghir; Renata Narita; Jean-Marc Robin
  3. Working Time Preferences, Hours Mismatch and Well-Being of Couples: Are There Spillovers? By Christoph Wunder; Guido Heineck
  4. Do Migrant Girls Always Perform Better? Differences between the Reading and Math Scores of 15-Year-Old Daughters and Sons of Migrants in PISA 2009 and Variations by Region of Origin and Country of Destination By Kornder Nils; Dronkers Jaap
  5. Protecting Fundamental Labor Rights: Lessons from Canada for the United States By Kris Warner

  1. By: Gregori Baetschmann
    Abstract: This paper studies the evolution of life satisfaction over the life course in Germany. It clarifies the causal interpretation of the econometric model by discussing the choice of control variables and the underidentification between age, cohort and time effects. The empirical part analyzes the distribution of life satisfaction over the life course at the aggregated, subgroup and individual level. To the findings: On average, life satisfaction is mildly decreasing up to age fifty-five followed by a hump shape with a maximum at seventy. The analysis at the lower levels suggests that people differ in their life satisfaction trends, whereas the hump shape after age fity-five is robust. No important differences between men and women are found. In contrast, education groups differ in their trends: highly educated people become happier over the life cycle, where life satisfaction decreases for less educated people.
    Keywords: Aging, life satisfaction, well-being, happiness methodology
    JEL: C23 I31 D91
    Date: 2012
  2. By: Costas Meghir (Cowles Foundation, Yale University); Renata Narita (World Bank); Jean-Marc Robin (Dept. of Economics, Sciences Po)
    Abstract: It is often argued that informal labor markets in developing countries promote growth by reducing the impact of regulation. On the other hand informality may reduce the amount of social protection offered to workers. We extend the wage-posting framework of Burdett and Mortensen (1998) to allow heterogeneous firms to decide whether to locate in the formal or the informal sector, as well as set wages. Workers engage in both off the job and on the job search. We estimate the model using Brazilian micro data and evaluate the labor market and welfare effects of policies towards informality.
    Keywords: Informality, Unemployment, Job search, Wage posting, Equilibrium wage distributions, On the job search, Method of moments
    JEL: J24 J3 J42 J6 O17
    Date: 2012–09
  3. By: Christoph Wunder; Guido Heineck
    Abstract: We analyze how well-being is related to working time preferences and hours mismatch. Selfreported measures of life satisfaction are used as an empirical approximation of true wellbeing. Our results indicate that well-being is generally lower among workers with working time mismatch. Particularly underemployment is detrimental for well-being. We further provide first evidence on spillovers from the partner’s working time mismatch. However, the spillover becomes insignificant once we control for the partner’s well-being. This suggests that well-being is contagious, and the spillover is due to interdependent utilities. Females experience the highest well-being when their partner is working full-time hours. Male wellbeing is unaffected over a wide interval of the partner’s working hours.
    Keywords: Subjective well-being, life satisfaction, working time preferences, working time mismatch, spillovers, utility interdependence
    JEL: I31 J21 J22
    Date: 2012
  4. By: Kornder Nils; Dronkers Jaap (METEOR)
    Abstract: As a follow-up of earlier analyses of the educational performance of all pupils with a migrationbackground with Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) waves 2003 and 2006, weanalyze the differences between the educational performance of 15-year old daughters and sons ofmigrants from specific regions of origin countries living in different destination countries. Weuse the newest PISA 2009 wave. Instead of analyzing only Western countries as destinationcountries, we analyze the educational performance of 16,612 daughters and 16,804 sons of migrantsin destination countries across Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Oceania. We distinguish 62 origincountries and 12 origin areas in 30 destination countries. We test three hypotheses: 1) Thedaughters of migrants from poorer, more traditional regions perform much better in reading thancomparable sons of migrants from the same origin regions, while the daughters of migrants frommore affluent and liberal regions perform slightly better in reading than comparable sons ofmigrants from the same regions. 2) Individual socioeconomic background has a stronger effect onthe educational performance of daughters of migrants than on the performance of sons of migrants.3) The performance of female native pupils has a higher influence on the performance of migrantdaughters than the performance of male native pupils has on the performance of migrant sons. Thefirst hypothesis can only partly be accepted. Female migrant pupils have both higher reading andmath scores than comparable male migrant pupils, and these gender differences among migrant pupilsare larger than among comparable native pupils. The additional variation in educationalperformance by region of origin is, however, not clearly related to the poverty or traditionalismof regions. Neither the second nor the third hypothesis can be accepted, given our results.
    Keywords: microeconomics ;
    Date: 2012
  5. By: Kris Warner
    Abstract: This paper examines the decline in unionization in the United States that began to occur in about 1960. While various explanations have been put forward to explain this – with many focusing on some form of structural changes to the economy or to the workforce, usually related to globalization or technological progress – this paper focuses on the role that employer opposition to unions has played, together with relatively weak labor law. In order to fully flesh out the experience of the United States, it looks to the experience of Canada as the country most similar to it.
    Keywords: unions, employment, labor, collective bargaining, canada, labor law, economics
    JEL: J J3 J5 J50 J53 J58
    Date: 2012–08

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