The effects of reducing the entitlement period to unemployment insurance benefits

Nynke de Groot, Bas van der Klaauw*

*Corresponding author for this work

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This paper uses a difference-in-differences approach exploiting a substantial reform of the Dutch unemployment insurance law and a regression discontinuity design based on policy discontinuities prior to the reform to study the effects of the benefits entitlement period on job finding and subsequent labor market outcomes. Using detailed administrative data covering the full population, both identification strategies show that reducing the entitlement period increases the job finding rate. We find mixed results for the quality of the job-worker match, which we attribute to differences in the time period and the group of affected unemployed workers. However, all our estimation results show that a shorter benefits entitlement period substantially increases cumulative earnings. These increases in earnings are larger than the cumulative reduction in benefits payments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-208
Number of pages14
JournalLabour Economics
Early online date23 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Difference-in-differences
  • Job finding
  • Job quality
  • Regression discontinuity
  • Unemployment benefits entitlement

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