Evaluating the Extent and Nature of ‘Envelope Wages’ in the European Union: A Geographical Analysis

European Spatial Research and Policy, Vol. 16, No. 1, pp. 115-129, 2009

15 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2015

See all articles by Colin Williams

Colin Williams

University of Sheffield - School of Management

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

To evaluate the spatialities of the illegal wage practice where employers pay their declared employees both an official declared wage and an undeclared ‘envelope’ wage so as to avoid tax liabilities, a 2007 survey conducted in 27 European Union (EU) member states is reported. The finding is that 5 per cent of employees received envelope wages which amount on average to some two-fifths of their wage packet. Revealing how although heavily concentrated in a small group of East-Central European nations, this wage practice is nonetheless ubiquitous, the paper concludes by discussing how this practice might be tackled.

Keywords: illegal work, informal economy, envelope wages, tax evasion, European Union

JEL Classification: H26, J46, K42, O17

Suggested Citation

Williams, Colin, Evaluating the Extent and Nature of ‘Envelope Wages’ in the European Union: A Geographical Analysis (2009). European Spatial Research and Policy, Vol. 16, No. 1, pp. 115-129, 2009, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2702900

Colin Williams (Contact Author)

University of Sheffield - School of Management ( email )

15 Conduit Road
Sheffield, S10 1FL
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/management/staff/williams/index

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