Joint work with Oskar Nordström Skans and Johan Vikström
Labour Economics, 2018, 53, pp. 33-45
This paper studies how targeted wage subsidies affect the performance of the recruiting firms. Using Swedish matched employer-employee administrative data from the period 1998–2008, we show that treated firms substantially outperform other recruiting firms after hiring through subsidies, despite identical pre-treatment performance levels and trends in a wide set of key dimensions. The pattern is less clear from 2007 onwards, after a reform removed the involvement of caseworkers from the subsidy approval process. Overall, our results suggest that targeted employment subsidies can have large positive effects on post-match outcomes of the hiring firms, at least if the policy environment allows for pre-screening by caseworkers.
The paper provides among the first quasi-experimental estimates of the threat of unemployment insurance (UI) benefit sanctions on job-exit rates. Using a difference-in-differences design, I exploit two reforms of the Swedish UI system that made monitoring and sanctions considerably stricter at different points in time for (i) UI claimants and (ii) job-seekers who exhausted their UI benefits and therefore receive alternative “activity support” benefits instead. Results show that men (in particular if long-term unemployed) respond to monitoring and the threat of sanctions by finding jobs faster. By contrast, the existing literature has almost exclusively focused on estimating how job-finding rates respond for those actually receiving a sanction. I estimate such “sanction-imposition effects” and find that they are similar in size for men and women. I further show that properly aggregated sanction-imposition effects explain very little of the overall reform effects for males, and that they are sufficiently small to be consistent with the small and insignificant reform effects found for women. A direct policy implication is that the total impact of monitoring and sanctions may be severely underestimated when focusing only on the sanction imposition effects as is typically done in the literature.
Joint work with Gerard J. van den Berg and Johan Vikström
Joint work with Raffaella Piccarreta and Marco Bonetti