Wage Insurance as a Policy Option in the United States

60 Pages Posted: 20 Jan 2016

Date Written: January 17, 2016


Wage insurance is a program that attempts to help permanently displaced workers transition to employment rapidly, effectively, and equitably. Because displaced workers have been found to suffer substantial earnings losses when they become reemployed, a wage insurance program provides a temporary wage supplement that partially reduces the wage loss experienced by targeted, newly reemployed workers. While participating workers receive a “wage supplement,” the program is called “wage insurance” because of its design as a social insurance program rather than an income transfer program. This paper provides a discussion of the development of wage insurance as a policy option in the United States and proposals that have had varying goals and designs.

Keywords: wage insurance, unemployment insurance, displaced workers, trade adjustment assistance, earnings losses, wage supplement

JEL Classification: J65, J68

Suggested Citation

Wandner, Stephen A., Wage Insurance as a Policy Option in the United States (January 17, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2718237 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2718237

Stephen A. Wandner (Contact Author)

The Urban Institute ( email )

2100 M Street, NW
Washington, DC 20037
United States

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