Recent changes in housing policies and their distributional impact across Europe - Research note 10/2016 by Francesco Figari, Katarina Hollan, Manos Matsaganis and Eszter Zolyomi (2016) This research note aims to explore how housing allowances and mortgage interest tax relief have evolved in recent years, against the background of falling disposable incomes and rising housing costs. The analysis focuses on seven EU countries (Greece, Italy, Austria, Hungary, the Netherlands, Sweden and the UK), covering a range of housing market developments and housing policy responses. The first part of the research note provides an overview of housing market trends over the period following the financial crisis and examines recent changes in housing policies in the countries concerned. The next part discusses the main features of two specific housing policy instruments, housing allowance and mortgage interest tax relief, also exploring recent changes there and the motives behind these. The last part estimates the distributional impact of housing allowances and mortgage tax relief in 2016 as compared with 2007 using the European tax-benefit model EUROMOD. The research note concludes with a discussion of the results and of the policy implications.
Recent Regional indicators of socio-economic well-being - Research note 9/2016 by Marton Medgyesi, Erhan Özdemir and Terry Ward (2016) The purpose of this Research Note is to examine the extent to which it is possible from the data in the European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) and in the European Labour Force Survey (LFS) to construct a composite index of well-being at regional level in the EU. The aim is to complement the European Pillar of Social Rights, which is at present under development, by providing a means of assessing disparities in the various aspects of socio-economic well-being across EU regions and of monitoring the process of convergence, or divergence, over time. It starts from a notion of well-being that is multi-dimensional. The dimensions considered here are income, or more especially, the extent of poverty and social exclusion, employment and access to good quality jobs, access to a decent education and training, health and access to healthcare, the state of housing and the availability of care services. In each case, the concern is to examine the extent to which it is possible to formulate reasonable indicators at NUTS 2 regional level of these dimensions from the data available in the EU-SILC and LFS.
Labour market situation and social inclusion of migrants - Research note 8/2016 by Erhan Őzdemir, Terry Ward, Eszter Zólyomi and Lucia Mytna Kureková (2016) This Research Note is divided into two parts. The first part examines the income of migrants relative to the native-born population and how it changed over 2007-2013, a period in which economic recession was followed by at best low growth in most parts of the EU. It considers, in particular, those on low income and the potential reasons why more of them are both in the bottom income quintile and at risk of poverty than the native-born, specifically with regard to their age structure, their employment situation, their education level and their household circumstances. It examines also their access to social protection, in specific, to unemployment benefits and healthcare, and their housing conditions, in both cases in relation to the native-born population and how the situation has changed over recent years. The main focus is on whether there is any evidence of their income and living conditions converging towards those of the native-born since 2007.
The second part examines social attitudes of migrants, again in relation to those of the native-born population, including their trust in institutions and people; their social values, their voting patterns and other forms of civic and political participation, the extent to which they feel part of society and their perception of the extent of discrimination; and social belonging. The analysis is based on data from the European Social Survey (ESS). As in the first part, a particular interest is in the way that these aspects have changed in recent years and the extent to which they have come closer to the native-born in these respects.
Household level determinants of labour market participation - Research note 7/2016 by Erhan Ozdemir and Terry Ward (2016) The purpose of this Research Note is to explore the possibility of using Labour Force Survey data to examine the influence of household circumstances on the labour market participation of two groups, women aged 18-54 and men and women aged 55-64, who are at or nearing retirement age in EU Member States. More particularly, its aim is to consider the ‘reason’ variables in the LFS, which indicate why people are not economically active or why they work part-time instead of full-time and the link between these variables and the household situation of the people in the two groups. In doing so, it distinguishes between women with a young child and others, those living alone, those sharing a household with someone in employment and those living in households where the others are not in work.
Job satisfaction and satisfaction in financial situation and their impact on life satisfaction - Research note 6/2016 by Márton Medgyesi and Eszter Zólyomi (2016) In this Research Note the aim is to explore the distribution and determinants of job satisfaction and satisfaction in the financial situation based on the EU-SILC ad hoc module carried out in 2013. The literature describes measures of job satisfaction and financial satisfaction as measures of domain satisfaction, as they express satisfaction in important domains of life. Satisfaction in each of these domains is assumed to be influenced by specific behaviour and circumstances, and satisfaction in all these domains determines overall life satisfaction. The Research Note describes the distribution of job satisfaction and financial satisfaction and studies the determinants of these using multivariate statistical models.
The non-material dimensions of young people’s quality of life in Europe - Research note 5/2016 by Bori Simonovits and András Gábos (2016) The situation of adolescents and young adults is of particular interest in the European Union, since these groups are at high risk of poverty and poor labour market entry, and have also been the target of recent policy initiatives, like the Youth Strategy and the Youth Guarantee scheme. While the well-being of children provides the focus for various organisations (e.g. UNICEF, OECD), relatively little is known about the quality of life of European young people. In this research note, we make extensive use of the IPOLIS indicator database to provide a cross-country comprehensive overview of the non-material quality of life of young adults.
There are important patterns in the non-material quality of life outcomes of young European people in terms of geographical region, sex and social status. However, we found that the use of adult surveys to assess the quality of life of young people in certain domains has serious limitations, if the analysis seeks to go beyond a description of the total young population or to assess differences by sex. With a few exceptions among EU Member States, the young cohort sub-samples are too small to provide robust estimates in sub-groups like income quartiles.
Low incentives to work at the extensive and intensive margin in selected EU countries - Research note 4/2016 by H. Xavier Jara, Katrin Gasior and Mattia Makovec (2016) Tax and benefit systems play an important role in determining work incentives at both, the extensive and the intensive margin of labour supply. The aim of this research note is to provide a comparative analysis of work incentives in selected EU countries. Our analysis makes use of EUROMOD and representative household microdata from nine EU countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Hungary, Austria, Finland and the UK) to provide a description of the distribution of short- and long-term participation tax rates and marginal effective tax rates in 2015, for people currently in work; and to characterise individuals facing low work incentives. Our results highlight the important variation in the distribution of work incentives across our selected countries. Unemployment insurance schemes play a significant role in short-term participation tax rates, although to different extents across countries. Our analysis further highlights differences across countries in terms of the population subgroups with low incentives to work and discusses the relevance of using a relative or an absolute threshold for such definition.
Making work pay - A conceptual paper - Research note 3/2016 by Manos Matsaganis and Francesco Figari (2016) Boosting the incomes of poor families while simultaneously enhancing the incentive to take up a job (if currently out of work), or to work longer hours (if currently employed part-time), is a key policy goal in Europe and beyond. This conceptual paper explains how work incentives may be measured, describes the main features of (and the issues raised by) in-work benefits, and outlines the potential contribution of the European tax-benefit model EUROMOD to further research on work incentives and in-work benefits in EU member states.
Decomposition of changes in the EU income distribution in 2007-2011 - Research note 02/2016 by Alari Paulus and Iva Tasseva (2016) The present Research Note summarises and decomposes changes in the household disposable income distribution in 2007-2011 across 27 EU countries to examine the impact of the Great Recession on household incomes and the key factors contributing to it. Using microsimulation techniques and applying the EU tax-benefit model EUROMOD in combination with EU-SILC household micro-data, direct (first-order) effects of tax-benefit policy on the income distribution are separated from the effects of changes in household market incomes and characteristics. There is substantial variation in income dynamics between and within countries. In most countries, changes in market income and population characteristics are found to have had a poverty- and inequality - increasing effect, while policies were more often poverty-(and inequality-) reducing. However, there is no clear country-level correlation between the two effects in this period.
Nowcasting: timely indicators for monitoring risk of poverty in 2014-2016 - Research note 1/2016 by Katrin Gasior and Olga Rastrigina (2016) The at-risk-of-poverty rate (AROP) is one of the three indicators used for monitoring progress towards the Europe 2020 poverty and social exclusion reduction target. Timeliness of this indicator is crucial for monitoring of the social situation and of the effectiveness of tax and benefit policies. However, partly due to the complexity of EU-SILC data collection, estimates of the number of people at risk of poverty are published with a significant delay. This paper extends and updates previous work on estimating (‘nowcasting’) indicators of poverty risk using the tax-benefit microsimulation model EUROMOD. The model’s routines are enhanced with additional adjustments to the EU-SILC based input data in order to capture changes in the employment characteristics of the population since the data were collected. The nowcasting method is applied to twenty-seven EU Member States. Median income and AROP rates are estimated up to 2016. The performance of the method is assessed by comparing the predictions with actual EU-SILC indicators for the years for which the latter are available. If nowcasts are unreliable we explain the main reasons behind the differences between the nowcasted and SILC-based indicators. For countries with stable and reliable results we discuss the main drivers behind the nowcasted trends.