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Author Allgrunn, Michael
Title Three essays in labor economics
book jacket
Descript 128 p
Note Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 70-10, Section: A, page: 3982
Adviser: Stephen Woodbury
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Michigan State University, 2009
The first of the three essays examines immigrant wage gaps from 1960 to 2000. Previous research has suggested that the U.S.-specific labor market skills of successive immigrant cohorts from declined from 1970 to 1990; that is, compared with earlier cohorts, recent cohorts started off with lower wages relative to natives and assimilated at slower rates. We argue that the decline in immigrant skills within country-of-origin groups is not supported by the long-term evidence. Analysis of US Census data from 1970 to 2000 suggests that the unexplained wage gap after ten years contradicts the hypothesis of declining skills for cohorts after 1965. More broadly, the unexplained wage gap should not be treated solely as an indicator of a change in immigrant cohort skills
The second essay examines how benefit levels for unemployment insurance (UI) affect the duration of unemployment. Most research on the effects of UI on unemployment duration has been limited by the use of a censored measure of unemployment spells. This essay reexamines the impact of UI benefit levels on unemployment duration using a dataset that allows examination of actual unemployment spells. We find that while censoring concerns are legitimate, the main problem in estimating the impact of UI benefit generosity on the duration of UI benefit receipt and jobless duration is finding exogenous variation in UI weekly benefit amounts. Using a quasi-experimental difference-in-difference approach, we find that the effect of benefit generosity on unemployment duration may be smaller than previously estimated
The third essay considers how an increase in the potential duration of unemployment benefits affects the duration of unemployment. We examine the extent to which increasing the potential duration of unemployment benefits increases the length of unemployment spells using a national sample of workers who were laid off and claimed unemployment insurance (UI) benefits during the recession of the early 1990s. The research design takes advantage of changes in the potential duration of benefits that occurred due to the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Act of 1991. Our attempts to reconcile the disparate findings of existing research suggest that different econometric estimators can produce substantially different inferences about the effects of increased potential benefit duration. We also find that estimates of the effect of potential benefit duration on weeks of benefit receipt often bear little relation to the estimates of the effect of potential duration on weeks of joblessness
School code: 0128
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 70-10A
Subject Economics, Labor
Economics, Theory
0510
0511
Alt Author Michigan State University
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