Why Are the Unemployed So Unhappy?Evidence from Panel Data

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Abstract

This paper tests for the importance of non-pecuniary costs of unemployment using a longitudinal data-set on life-satisfaction of working-age men in Germany. We show that unemployment has a large detrimental effect on satisfaction after individual specific fixed effects are controlled for. The non-pecuniary effect is much larger than the effect that stems from the associated loss of income.

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