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The impact of the employment insurance repayment policy: nonexperimental approaches

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This research examines the impact of the strengthened repayment provision under the Employment Insurance (EI) system in Canada. The provision has introduced an increase in benefit repayment rates and a reduction in the repayment threshold. Without a randomized experiment, this article uses various nonexperimental approaches, particularly matching, to estimate the policy effect. Using data from the Survey of Changes in Employment (CIE) and the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID), the results suggest that the new repayment policy has reduced the probabilities of filing a claim among workers whose annual income is equal to or greater than $48 750. The estimated decline in the claim rate ranges between 6 and 12 percentage points, depending on the datasets. The results appear to be robust regardless of the methods of estimation.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Family and Labour Studies, Statistics Canada, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0T6, Canada

Publication date: April 1, 2010

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