Advertisement

Empirical Economics

, Volume 56, Issue 5, pp 1623–1645 | Cite as

Great Recession and disability insurance in Spain

  • Sergi Jiménez-Martín
  • Arnau Juanmarti MestresEmail author
  • Judit Vall Castelló
Article

Abstract

In this paper, we explore the relationship between economic conditions and disability insurance (DI) participation in Spain during the Great Recession. Using individual-level longitudinal data, we show that DI awards are procyclical, contrary to the countercyclical behavior found in most of the previous literature. We show that DI applications are not responsive to the business cycle and that economic conditions have no effect on the composition of new DI awardees, suggesting that DI participation in Spain is not driven by partially disabled individuals resorting to the DI program as a result of bad labor market conditions. Furthermore, we argue that the procyclical behavior of DI awards may be driven by an informal increase in screening stringency and by an improvement in the health status of the population as a result of worse economic conditions.

Keywords

Disability insurance Business cycle Great Recession Procyclical health 

JEL Classification

H55 I10 J14 

References

  1. Aparicio-Feno A (2016) Returns to education and educational outcomes: the case of the Spanish housing boom. J Hum Cap 10(2):235–265CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ariizumi H, Schirle T (2012) Are recessions really good for your health? Evidence from Canada. Soc Sci Med 74(8):1224–1231CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Autor D (2015) The unsustainable rise of the disability rolls in the United States: causes, consequences and policy options (Chapter 5). In: Scholz JK, Moon H, Lee S-H (eds) Social policies in an age of austerity: a comparative analysis of the US and Korea. Edward Elgar Publishing, Northampton, pp 107–136Google Scholar
  4. Autor D, Duggan M (2003) The rise in the disability rolls and the decline in unemployment. Q J Econ 118(1):157–205CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Autor D, Duggan M (2006) The growth in the social security disability rolls: a fiscal crisis unfolding. J Econ Perspect 20(3):71–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Benítez-Silva H, Disney R, Jiménez-Martín S (2010) Disability, capacity for work and the business cycle: an international perspective. Econ Policy 25:483–536CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Black D, Daniel K, Sanders S (2002) The impact of economic conditions on participation in disability programs: evidence from the coal boom and bust. Am Econ Rev 92(1):27–50CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Buchmueller TC, Grignon M, Jusot F (2007) Unemployment and mortality in France, 1982–2002. Center for Health Economics and Policy Analysis Working Paper 07-04Google Scholar
  9. Coe NB, Rutledge MS (2013) How does the composition of disability insurance applicants change across business cycles? Center for Retirement Research at Boston College Working Paper 2013-5Google Scholar
  10. Duggan M, Imberman S (2009) Why are the disability rolls skyrocketing? The contribution of population characteristics, economic conditions, and program generosity. In: Cutler DM, David A (eds) Health at older ages: the causes and consequences of declining disability among the elderly. University of Chicago Press, pp 337–379Google Scholar
  11. Gonzalez F, Quast T (2011) Macroeconomic changes and mortality in Mexico. Empir Econ 40(2):305–319CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Haaland VF, Telle K (2015) Pro-cyclical mortality across socieconomic groups and health status. J Health Econ 39:248–258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Heutel G, Ruhm CJ (2016) Air pollution and procyclical mortality. J Assoc Environ Resource Econ 3(3):667–706Google Scholar
  14. Jiménez-Martín S, Vall Castelló J (2009) Business cycle effects on labour force transitions for older people in Spain. FEDEA Working Papers 2009 (25)Google Scholar
  15. Lindner S, Burdick C, Meseguer J (2017) Characteristics and employment of applicants for social security disability insurance over the business cycle. BE J Econ Anal Policy 17(1)Google Scholar
  16. Maestas N, Mullen KJ, Alexander S (2015) Disability Insurance and the Great Recession. Am Econ Rev Pap Proc 105(5):177–182CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Mueller A, Rothstein J, von Wachter TM (2016) Unemployment insurance and disability insurance in the Great Recession. J Labor Econ 34(S1):445–475CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Neumayer E (2004) Recessions lower (some) mortality rates: evidence from Germany. Soc Sci Med 58(6):1037–1047CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. OECD (2010) Sickness, disability and work: breaking the barriers: a synthesis of findings across OECD countries. OECD Publishing, ParisGoogle Scholar
  20. Rege M, Telle K, Votruba M (2009) The effect of plant downsizing on disability pension utilization. J Eur Econ Assoc 7(4):754–785CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Regidor E, Vallejo F, Granados JAT, Viciana-Ferníndez FJ, de la Fuente L, Barrio G (2016) Mortality decrease according to socioeconomic groups during the economic crisis in Spain: a cohort study of 36 million people. Lancet 388(10060):2642–2652CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Ruhm CJ (2000) Are recessions good for your health? Q J Econ 115(2):617–650CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Ruhm CJ (2003) Good times make you sick. J Health Econ 22(4):637–658CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Ruhm CJ (2005) Healthy living in hard times. J Health Econ 24(2):341–363CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Ruhm CJ, Black WE (2002) Does drinking really decrease in bad times? J Health Econ 21(4):659–678CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Rupp K, Stapleton D (1995) Determinants of the growth in the social security administration’s disability programs: an overview. Soc Secur Bull 58(4):43–70Google Scholar
  27. Sparks K, Cooper C, Fried Y, Shirom A (1997) The effects of hours of work on health: a meta-analytic review. J Occup Organizational Psychology 70(4):391–408CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Tapia Granados JA (2005) Recessions and mortality in Spain, 1980–1997. Eur J Popul 21:393–422CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sergi Jiménez-Martín
    • 1
  • Arnau Juanmarti Mestres
    • 2
    Email author
  • Judit Vall Castelló
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Economics and BusinessUniversitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Center for Research in Health and EconomicsUniversitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain

Personalised recommendations