Becoming (Un)Employed and Life Satisfaction: Asymmetric Effects and Potential Omitted Variable Bias in Empirical Happiness Studies

Posted: 29 Sep 2011 Last revised: 20 May 2017

See all articles by Wolfgang Maennig

Wolfgang Maennig

Universität Hamburg, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences

Markus Wilhelm

University of Hamburg - School of Business, Economics and Social Sciences

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: September 1, 2011

Abstract

Becoming unemployed has negative effects on life satisfaction; a transition from unemployment to employment, however, has only small positive effects. This asymmetry indicates a potential 'omitted variable bias' in previous empirical happiness studies, with the consequence of underestimated effects of unemployment on life satisfaction. There are also gender-specific effects of asymmetry.

Keywords: happiness, life satisfaction, asymmetric effect, labour status, employment, unemployment

JEL Classification: I31, J01, Z13

Suggested Citation

Maennig, Wolfgang and Wilhelm, Markus, Becoming (Un)Employed and Life Satisfaction: Asymmetric Effects and Potential Omitted Variable Bias in Empirical Happiness Studies (September 1, 2011). Applied Economics Letters, Vol. 19, No. 17, 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1935319 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1935319

Wolfgang Maennig (Contact Author)

Universität Hamburg, Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences ( email )

Von-Melle-Park 5
Hamburg, 20146
Germany

Markus Wilhelm

University of Hamburg - School of Business, Economics and Social Sciences ( email )

Von-Melle-Park 5
Hamburg, DE D-20146
Germany

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