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Consumption Insurance against Wage Risk: Family Labor Supply and Optimal Progressive Income Taxation†

Consumption Insurance against Wage Risk: Family Labor Supply and Optimal Progressive Income... AbstractWe show that a calibrated life cycle two-earner household model with endogenous labor supply can rationalize the extent of consumption insurance against shocks to male and female wages, as estimated empirically by Blundell, Pistaferri, and Saporta-Eksten (2016) in US data. In the model, 35 percent of male and 18 percent of female permanent wage shocks pass through to consumption, compared to the empirical estimates of 32 percent and 19 percent. Most of the consumption insurance against permanent male wage shocks is provided through the presence and labor supply response of the female earner. Abstracting from this private intrahousehold income insurance mechanism strongly biases upward the welfare losses from idiosyncratic wage risk as well as the desired extent of public insurance through progressive income taxation. Relative to the standard one-earner life cycle model, the optimal degree of tax progressivity is significantly lower and the welfare gains from implementing the optimal system are cut roughly in half. (JEL D15, H21, H24, J16, J22, J31) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics American Economic Association

Consumption Insurance against Wage Risk: Family Labor Supply and Optimal Progressive Income Taxation†

Consumption Insurance against Wage Risk: Family Labor Supply and Optimal Progressive Income Taxation†

American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics , Volume 13 (1) – Jan 1, 2021

Abstract

AbstractWe show that a calibrated life cycle two-earner household model with endogenous labor supply can rationalize the extent of consumption insurance against shocks to male and female wages, as estimated empirically by Blundell, Pistaferri, and Saporta-Eksten (2016) in US data. In the model, 35 percent of male and 18 percent of female permanent wage shocks pass through to consumption, compared to the empirical estimates of 32 percent and 19 percent. Most of the consumption insurance against permanent male wage shocks is provided through the presence and labor supply response of the female earner. Abstracting from this private intrahousehold income insurance mechanism strongly biases upward the welfare losses from idiosyncratic wage risk as well as the desired extent of public insurance through progressive income taxation. Relative to the standard one-earner life cycle model, the optimal degree of tax progressivity is significantly lower and the welfare gains from implementing the optimal system are cut roughly in half. (JEL D15, H21, H24, J16, J22, J31)

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Publisher
American Economic Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2021 © American Economic Association
ISSN
1945-7715
DOI
10.1257/mac.20180125
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractWe show that a calibrated life cycle two-earner household model with endogenous labor supply can rationalize the extent of consumption insurance against shocks to male and female wages, as estimated empirically by Blundell, Pistaferri, and Saporta-Eksten (2016) in US data. In the model, 35 percent of male and 18 percent of female permanent wage shocks pass through to consumption, compared to the empirical estimates of 32 percent and 19 percent. Most of the consumption insurance against permanent male wage shocks is provided through the presence and labor supply response of the female earner. Abstracting from this private intrahousehold income insurance mechanism strongly biases upward the welfare losses from idiosyncratic wage risk as well as the desired extent of public insurance through progressive income taxation. Relative to the standard one-earner life cycle model, the optimal degree of tax progressivity is significantly lower and the welfare gains from implementing the optimal system are cut roughly in half. (JEL D15, H21, H24, J16, J22, J31)

Journal

American Economic Journal: MacroeconomicsAmerican Economic Association

Published: Jan 1, 2021

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