Determinants of labor shortage - with particular focus on the German environmental sector
29 August 2014
Despite the ongoing discussion on labor shortage in the German economy there is still a lack of empirical analyses of this problem based on adequate econometric methods. The paper explores the determinants of labor shortage in the environmental sector supplying products and services that help to reduce environmental impacts and energy use. Labor shortages occur when the price adjustment mechanism is too slow to balance labor demand and supply. The empirical analysis of labor shortage uses recent data of the establishment panel of the Institute for Employment Research in Nuremberg. A descriptive analysis shows that the environmental sector seems to be over-proportionally affected by labor shortage.
IAB-Discussion Paper 22/2014
On GDP-employment decoupling in Germany
29 August 2014
This paper investigates the time-varying relationship between German output and employment growth, in particular their decoupling in recent years. We estimate a correlated unobserved components model that allows for both persistent and cyclical time variation in the employment impact of GDP as well as an autonomous employment component capturing other factors than real output. As one result, we measure a permanent decline in Verdoorn's coefficient as well as pronounced effects of the autonomous employment component in the recent years. The development of the estimated impact parameters is shown to crucially depend on structural change, but also on labour availability and business expectations.
IAB-Discussion Paper 21/2014
Labour market effects of retraining for the unemployed
27 August 2014
We analyse the impact of retraining for the unemployed on future labour market success, and estimate effects separately for different target occupations. We use German registry data and apply statistical matching methods. The results show that on average, after a period with strong lock-in effects, retraining increases the employment probability of women by more than 20 percentage points. Effects for male participants are somewhat weaker. Although we find differences in the effectiveness of retraining by target occupations, these differences cannot completely explain the observed gender differences. Healthcare occupations, which are the most important target occupations especially of female participants, are among those with the strongest effects.
IAB-Discussion Paper 20/2014
Firm performance and trade with low-income countries
26 August 2014
Do firms in developing countries shift trade towards developed economies as a result of high economic growth? The matched customs-manufacturing firm data used in this study confront this hypothesized link with empirical evidence. Our analysis reveals a rising low-income country trade share around and after China's accession to the World Trade Organization. Based on this stylized fact, we analyze the link between firm characteristics and trade with low-income countries.
IAB-Discussion Paper 19/2014
Job polarization on local labor markets
22 August 2014
The labor markets of most industrialized countries are polarized. This means that employment has grown in jobs at the upper and lower tails of the wage distribution, while employment in the middle part of the distribution has stagnated or declined. However, there exists no measure that allows a quantitative comparison across different labor markets as yet. The author propose a straightforward way to measure the actual magnitude of job polarization. To demonstrate its application, he use this measure to compare polarization across German local labor markets. Job polarization almost exclusively occurs in urban areas where the hypothesis of routine biased technological change is most likely to prevail.
IAB-Discussion Paper 18/2014
Industry space and skill-relatedness of economic activities
21 August 2014
The resilience and growth prospects of a region depend crucially on the extent to which industry-specific human capital can be redeployed across the industries of a regional economy. To this end, the authors present a toolbox to analyse a region’s industrial structure, development prospects and economic resilience. With the help of this toolbox human capital similarities, or skill-relatedness, among industries are highlighted. The core of these analyses is the so-called industry space, a network that connects industries with similar human capital requirements. For the time period 1999 to 2008, a regional comparative analysis of three eastern German automobile regions, namely south-west Saxony (SWS), Eisenach region (EIS) and Leipzig region (LEI), is conducted.
Techniques for asking sensitive questions in labor market surveys
29 July 2014
Standard surveying techniques are usually not suited to collect valid information on the prevalence of undeclared work or receipt of basic income support. Respondents often misreport their behavior and adjust their answer in accordance with the social norm. In the social sciences alternative strategies have been developed, particularly targeted to increase respondent anonymity in the interview situation and thus reduce misreporting on sensitive topics. Antje Kirchner investigates whether these special techniques lead to higher reports of undeclared work and receipt of basic income support. Furthermore, this work presents the Item Sum Technique, a novel questioning technique that shows more promising results compared to direct questioning.
Labour hoarding in Germany
02 July 2014
During the crisis (2008-09) Germany experienced a huge decrease in GDP. Employment, however, remained surprisingly stable. A whole strand of literature has aimed at quantifying the contribution of short-time work to the German labour market miracle. In the course of this literature we estimate the treatment effect of short-time work on employment at establishment level using a dynamic propensity score matching approach. The analysis is based on data from the IAB Establishment Panel combined with administrative data on short-time work establishments from the Federal Employment Agency. Our results do not indicate any treatment effect of short-time work on employment.
IAB-Discussion Paper 17/2014