May 2013

IZA DP No. 7400: Seek and Ye Shall Find: How Search Requirements Affect Job Finding Rates of Older Workers

published in De Economist, 2014, 162 (4), 377 - 395

Unemployment insurance recipients in the Netherlands were for a long time exempted from the requirement to actively search for a job when they reached the age of 57.5. We study how this exemption affected the job finding rates of the recipients involved. We find evidence that the job finding rate of unemployed workers who were getting close to the age of 57.5 is reduced in anticipation of the removal of the search requirement. In addition we find a large negative effect on job finding rates of the actual removal of the search requirement. Apparently, even for persons with seemingly poor job prospects search requirements have a positive effect on finding rates.