WIFO Working Papers

Discussion papers by WIFO staff, consultants and guests – As of 2006 available online only – Free download

WIFO Working Papers are not peer reviewed and are not necessarily based on a coordinated position of WIFO. The authors were informed about the Guidelines for Good Scientific Practice of the Austrian Agency for Research Integrity (ÖAWI), in particular with regard to the documentation of all elements necessary for the replicability of the results.

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Recent issues (651 hits)

WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (652), 38 pages
Commissioned by: Public Employment Service Austria
Online since: 18.11.2022 0:00
Many European countries are facing the key challenge of integrating low-skilled jobless young people into the labour market. From 2018 to 2020, the Public Employment Service (PES) in Vienna tested a new model of intensified support ("case management"). The target group consisted of young unemployed persons with low formal qualifications who were drawing on social assistance. Based on the pilot project and a propensity matching approach, we show that the increase in staff significantly increased the intensity of the counselling. It led to an increase in job proposals and active labour market programme participation, as well as sanctions in the form of benefit suspensions for failure to keep PES appointments. In line with the goal, more of the young people were encouraged to take part in training and further education instead of being quickly placed in an unskilled job. However, in the three-year follow-up period, the intensified counselling did not (yet) have a significant effect on the overall extent of integration into employment. Regarding post-unemployment job quality, we find no effects on wages at the start of a job.
Constantinos Syropoulos, Gabriel Felbermayr (WIFO), Aleksandra Kirilakha, Erdal Yalcin, Yoto V. Yotov
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (651), 46 pages
Online since: 17.11.2022 0:00
This paper introduces the third update/release of the Global Sanctions Data Base (GSDB-R3). The GSDB-R3 extends the period of coverage from 1950-2019 to 1950-2022, which includes two special periods – COVID-19 and the war between Russia and Ukraine. The new update of the GSDB contains a total of 1,325 cases. In response to multiple inquiries and requests, the GSDB-R3 has been amended with a new variable that distinguishes between unilateral and multilateral sanctions. As before, the GSDB comes in two versions, case-specific and dyadic, which are freely available upon request at GSDB@drexel.edu. To highlight one of the new features of the GSDB, we estimate the heterogeneous effects of unilateral and multilateral sanctions on trade. We also obtain estimates of the effects on trade of the 2014 sanctions on Russia.
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (650), 40 pages
Online since: 16.11.2022 0:00
This paper studies the interplay of integration into EU value chains and industrial development measured by labour productivity. Our integration indicator measures value chain trade within the Single Market relative to global value chain networks. Using a simultaneous equation model, we find an overall positive effect of integration on labour productivity, which is driven by upstream integration. Highly productive industries rather seek global value chain trade than regional integration, though. Better domestic institutions facilitate EU integration, although they favour industries with less complex product portfolios and lower levels of knowledge cumulativeness.
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (649), 39 pages
Online since: 17.10.2022 0:00
While international trade can offer gains from specialisation and access to a wider range of products, it is also closely interlinked with global environmental problems, above all, anthropogenic climate change. This survey provides a structured overview of the economic literature on the interaction between environmental outcomes, trade, environmental policy and trade policy. In this endeavour, it covers approaches reaching from descriptive data analysis based on Input-Output tables, over quantitative trade models and econometric studies to game-theoretic analyses. Addressed issues are in particular the emission content of trade and emissions along value chains, the relocation of dirty firms and environmental impacts abroad, impacts of specific trade polices (such as trade agreements or tariffs) or environmental policy (such as Border Carbon Adjustment), transportation emissions, as well as the role of firms. Across the different topics covered, the paper also tries to identify avenues for future research, with a particular focus on extending quantitative trade and environment models.
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (648), 18 pages
Online since: 31.08.2022 0:00
The Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused disruptions in international trade and highlighted the dependency of small open economies in Europe on imports, especially of energy. These events may have changed Europeans' attitude towards globalization. We study two waves of representative population surveys conducted in Austria, one right before the Russian invasion and the other two months later. Our unique dataset allows us to assess changes in the Austrian public's attitudes towards globalization and import dependency as a short-term reaction to economic turbulences and geopolitical upheaval at the onset of war in Europe. We show that two months after the invasion, anti-globalization sentiment in general has not spread, but that people have become more concerned about strategic external dependencies, especially in energy imports, suggesting that citizens' attitudes regarding globalization are differentiated.
In a randomised controlled trial in Austria, lower caseloads in public employment offices led to more meetings of the unemployed with their caseworkers, more job offers, more program assignments, and more sanctions for noncompliance with job search requirements. More intensive counselling led to shorter unemployment episodes due to faster job entry, but also to more exits from the labour force in the two years following treatment. We find effects for different subgroups of unemployed. We find no effects on wages. A cost-benefit analysis suggests that lower caseloads not only shorten the duration of unemployment but are also cost-effective.
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (646), 44 pages
Commissioned by: European Commission
Online since: 08.04.2022 0:00
As governments spend unprecedented sums of public money on pandemic related rescue and recovery measures, while humankind is facing mounting long-term challenges – and above all the climate crisis –, the question whether and to what extent COVID-19 recovery programmes contribute to countries' commitments to a sustainability oriented recovery is gaining increasing urgency. We argue that overcoming the economic and social impacts of the pandemic require deeper structural changes than a return to a more or less business as usual scenario to limit the impacts of climate change. Recovery packages should therefore be designed in such a way as to avoid fossil lock-in effects and take into account that the social and technological actions taken today will unfold their effects in the climate system with a time lag only. An interesting question in this context is the effectiveness of green recovery measures not only with regard to environmental objectives, but also concerning conventional economic indicators, which are traditionally summarised under the heading "multiplier effects". Evaluations of the economic effects of green recovery measures, e.g. those implemented during the global financial crisis, are in short supply. Most of the existing empirical analyses have an ex ante focus, while ex post evaluations are scarce. This paper aims at contributing to this research gap by providing a review of the empirical evidence of the macroeconomic effects of green recovery measures.
Alexander Krenek, Margit Schratzenstaller, Klaus Grünberger (WIFO), Andreas Thiemann
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (645), 103 pages
Commissioned by: European Commission
Online since: 13.04.2022 0:00
Based on the most recent data from the ECB's Household Finance and Consumption Survey, the project models the future household-level wealth distribution in five selected EU member countries (Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, and Italy) to derive inheritances based on different demographic and wealth projection scenarios. On this basis, various inheritance tax scenarios are simulated to estimate potential inheritance tax revenues for a projection period of 30 years. Our results indicate that multiple factors coincide in favouring a growing revenue potential for inheritance taxation in the medium-term. Wealth accumulation and appreciation lead to higher average wealth levels. The shift of the baby boomer generation out of the labour force results in an increase of the older population both in absolute and relative terms. Eventually, this will lead to a rise in the number of deaths and the number of inheritances. Additionally, low fertility rates lead to a reduction of the average number of successors and thereby decrease the importance of exemption thresholds, as individual inheritances become larger. Overall, our simulations show that the future revenue potential of inheritance taxes may be substantial. In practice, it can be expected that the theoretical revenue potential demonstrated by our simulations will be reduced by tax avoidance, real responses, and general equilibrium effects on other taxes. A review of the empirical evidence shows that behavioural responses to inheritance taxes are less pronounced compared to a net wealth tax.
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (644), 38 pages
Online since: 03.03.2022 7:00
With ever-increasing political tensions between China and Russia on one side and the EU and the USA on the other, it only seems a matter of time until protectionist policies cause a decoupling of global value chains. This paper uses a computable general equilibrium trade model calibrated with the latest version of the GTAP database to simulate the effect of doubling non-tariff barriers – both unilateral and reciprocal – between the two blocks on trade and welfare. Imposing trade barriers almost completely eliminates bilateral imports. In addition, changes in price levels lead to higher imports and lower exports of the imposing country group from and to the rest of the world. The targeted country group increases exports to the rest of the world and reduces imports. Welfare falls in all countries involved, suggesting that governments should strive to cooperate rather than turning away from each other. By imposing a trade war on Russia, the political West could inflict severe damage on the Russian economy because of the latter's smaller relative size.
WIFO Working Papers, 2022, (643), 48 pages
Online since: 18.02.2022 0:00
We quantify the partial and general equilibrium effects of GATT/WTO membership on trade and welfare. Using an extensive database covering manufacturing trade for 186 countries over the period 1980-2016, we find that the average impact of GATT/WTO membership on trade among member countries is large, positive, and significant. We contribute to the literature by estimating country-specific estimates and find them to vary widely across the countries in our sample with poorer members benefitting more. Using these estimates, we simulate the general equilibrium effects of GATT/WTO on welfare, which are sizable and heterogeneous across members, and relatively small for non-member countries. We show that countries not experiencing positive trade effects from joining GATT/WTO can still gain in terms of welfare, due to lower import prices and higher export demand.
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