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See detailTax Evasion, Welfare Fraud, and "The Broken Windows" Effect: An Experiment in Belgium, France and the Netherlands
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Scientific conference (2011, July 29)

In a series of experiments conducted in Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders), France and the Netherlands, we compare behavior regarding tax evasion and welfare dodging, with and without information about ... [more ▼]

In a series of experiments conducted in Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders), France and the Netherlands, we compare behavior regarding tax evasion and welfare dodging, with and without information about others’ behavior. Subjects have to decide between a ‘registered’ income, the realization of which will be known to the tax authority for sure, and an ‘unregistered’ income that will only be known with some probability. This unregistered income comes from self-employment in the Tax treatment and from black labor supplementing some unemployment compensation in the Welfare treatment. Subjects have then to decide on whether reporting their income or not, knowing the risk of detection. The results show that (i) individuals evade more in the Welfare treatment than in the Tax treatment; (ii) many subjects choose an option that allows for tax evasion or welfare fraud but report their income honestly anyway; (iii) examples of low compliance tend to increase tax evasion while examples of high compliance exert no influence; (iv) tax evasion is more frequent in France and the Netherlands; Walloons evade taxes less than the Flemish. There is no cross-country difference in welfare dodging. [less ▲]

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See detailPauvreté et mortalité différentielle chez les personnes âgées
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Pestieau, Pierre ULg; ponthiere, gregory

E-print/Working paper (2011)

Cette note a pour objectif d’illustrer, dans le cas de la Belgique et de ses régions, un problème particulier posé par la mesure de la pauvreté. Etant donné que la mortalité varie selon le niveau de ... [more ▼]

Cette note a pour objectif d’illustrer, dans le cas de la Belgique et de ses régions, un problème particulier posé par la mesure de la pauvreté. Etant donné que la mortalité varie selon le niveau de revenu – les personnes aux revenus plus élevés vivant plus longtemps, en moyenne, que les personnes aux revenus plus faibles – les taux de pauvreté calculés pour les classes âgées dépendent non seulement de ce que l’on pourrait appeler la vraie pauvreté, mais aussi de la sélection induite par la mortalité différentielle selon le revenu. En calculant les taux de pauvreté que l’on observerait si des personnes avec différents niveaux de revenus avaient toutes la même espérance de vie, on peut ainsi estimer la vraie pauvreté, en neutralisant les interférences dues à la mortalité différentielle. Cet ajustement des mesures de pauvreté est particulièrement intéressant pour la Belgique, où les écarts de longévité entre Flamands et Francophones et entre riches et moins riches sont importants. [less ▲]

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See detailTax Evasion, Welfare Fraud, and ”The Broken Windows” Effect: An Experiment in Belgium, France and the Netherlands
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Conference (2011, June 09)

In a series of experiments conducted in Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders), France and the Netherlands, we compare behavior regarding tax evasion and welfare dodging, with and without information about ... [more ▼]

In a series of experiments conducted in Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders), France and the Netherlands, we compare behavior regarding tax evasion and welfare dodging, with and without information about others’ behavior. Subjects have to decide between a ‘registered’ income, the realization of which will be known to the tax authority for sure, and an ‘unregistered’ income that will only be known with some probability. This unregistered income comes from self-employment in the Tax treatment and from black labor supplementing some unemployment compensation in the Welfare treatment. Subjects have then to decide on whether reporting their income or not, knowing the risk of detection. The results show that (i) individuals evade more in the Welfare treatment than in the Tax treatment; (ii) many subjects choose an option that allows for tax evasion or welfare fraud but report their income honestly anyway; (iii) examples of low compliance tend to increase tax evasion while examples of high compliance exert no influence; (iv) tax evasion is more frequent in France and the Netherlands; Walloons evade taxes less than the Flemish. There is no cross-country difference in welfare dodging. [less ▲]

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See detailPauvreté et mortalité différentielle chez les personnes âgées
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Pestieau, Pierre ULg; Ponthiere, Grégory ULg

in Reflets et Perspectives de la Vie Economique (2011), L(4), 45-54

Cette note a pour objectif d’illustrer, dans le cas de la Belgique et de ses régions, un problème particulier posé par la mesure de la pauvreté. Etant donné que la mortalité varie selon le niveau de ... [more ▼]

Cette note a pour objectif d’illustrer, dans le cas de la Belgique et de ses régions, un problème particulier posé par la mesure de la pauvreté. Etant donné que la mortalité varie selon le niveau de revenu – les personnes aux revenus plus élevés vivant plus longtemps, en moyenne, que les personnes aux revenus plus faibles – les taux de pauvreté calculés pour les classes âgées dépendent non seulement de ce que l’on pourrait appeler la vraie pauvreté, mais aussi de la sélection induite par la mortalité différentielle selon le revenu. En calculant les taux de pauvreté que l’on observerait si des personnes avec différents niveaux de revenus avaient toutes la même espérance de vie, on peut ainsi estimer la vraie pauvreté, en neutralisant les interférences dues à la mortalité différentielle. Cet ajustement des mesures de pauvreté est particulièrement intéressant pour la Belgique, où les écarts de longévité entre Flamands et Francophones et entre riches et moins riches sont importants. [less ▲]

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See detailThe ratio bias phenomenon: fact or artifact?
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Vieder, Ferdinand; Villeval, MArie-Claire

in Theory and Decision (2011), 71(4), 615-641

The ratio bias—according to which individuals prefer to bet on probabilities expressed as a ratio of large numbers to normatively equivalent or superior probabilities expressed as a ratio of small ... [more ▼]

The ratio bias—according to which individuals prefer to bet on probabilities expressed as a ratio of large numbers to normatively equivalent or superior probabilities expressed as a ratio of small numbers—has recently gained momentum, with researchers especially in health economics emphasizing the policy importance of the phenomenon. Although the bias has been replicated several times, some doubts remain about its economic significance. Our two experiments show that the bias disappears once order effects are excluded, and once salient and dominant incentives are provided. This holds true for both choice and valuation tasks. Also, adding context to the decision problem does not alter this finding. No ratio bias could be found in between-subject tests either, which leads us to the conclusion that the policy relevance of the phenomenon is doubtful at best. [less ▲]

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See detailTax Evasion, Welfare Fraud, and "The Broken Windows" Effect: An Experiment in Belgium, France and the Netherlands
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Pestieau, Pierre ULg; Riedl, Arno et al

E-print/Working paper (2011)

In a series of experiments conducted in Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders), France and the Netherlands, we compare behavior regarding tax evasion and welfare dodging, with and without information about ... [more ▼]

In a series of experiments conducted in Belgium (Wallonia and Flanders), France and the Netherlands, we compare behavior regarding tax evasion and welfare dodging, with and without information about others’ behavior. Subjects have to decide between a ‘registered’ income, the realization of which will be known to the tax authority for sure, and an ‘unregistered’ income that will only be known with some probability. This unregistered income comes from self-employment in the Tax treatment and from black labor supplementing some unemployment compensation in the Welfare treatment. Subjects have then to decide on whether reporting their income or not, knowing the risk of detection. The results show that (i) individuals evade more in the Welfare treatment than in the Tax treatment; (ii) many subjects choose an option that allows for tax evasion or welfare fraud but report their income honestly anyway; (iii) examples of low compliance tend to increase tax evasion while examples of high compliance exert no influence; (iv) tax evasion is more frequent in France and the Netherlands; Walloons evade taxes less than the Flemish. There is no cross-country difference in welfare dodging. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 11 (0 ULg)
See detailRisk Taking of Executives under Different Incentive Contracts: Experimental Evidence
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Vieider, Ferdinand

E-print/Working paper (2011)

Classic financial agency theory recommends compensation through stock options rather than shares to induce risk neutrality in otherwise risk averse agents. In an experiment, we find that subjects acting ... [more ▼]

Classic financial agency theory recommends compensation through stock options rather than shares to induce risk neutrality in otherwise risk averse agents. In an experiment, we find that subjects acting as executives do also take risks that are excessive from the perspective of shareholders if compensated through options. Compensation through restricted company stock reduces the uptake of excessive risks. Even under stock-ownership, however, experimental executives continue to take excessive risks—a result that cannot be accounted for by classic incentive theory. We develop a basic model in which such risk-taking behavior is explained based on a richer array of risk attitudes derived from Prospect Theory. We use the model to derive hypotheses on what may be driving excessive risk taking in the experiment. Testing those hypotheses, we find that most of them are indeed borne out by the data. We thus conclude that a prospect-theory-based model is more apt at explaining risk attitudes under different compensation regimes than traditional principal-agent models grounded in expected utility theory. [less ▲]

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See detailIncentive Effects on Risk Attitude in Small Probability Prospects
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Vieider, Ferdinand; Villeval, Marie Claire

in Economics Letters (2010), 109(2),

We report between-subject results on the effect of monetary stakes on risk attitudes. While we find the typical risk seeking for small probabilities, risk seeking is reduced under high stakes. This ... [more ▼]

We report between-subject results on the effect of monetary stakes on risk attitudes. While we find the typical risk seeking for small probabilities, risk seeking is reduced under high stakes. This suggests that utility is not consistently concave. [less ▲]

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See detailReining in Excessive Risk Taking by Executives: Experimental Evidence
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Conference (2010, July)

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See detailUnemployment and Retirement in a model with age-specific heterogeneity
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Conference (2010, June)

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See detailOn the Convergence of Social Protection Performance in the European Union
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Scientific conference (2010, May)

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See detailMeasurement and comparison of elderly welfare in the EU
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Conference (2010, April)

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See detailOn the Convergence of Social Protection Performance in the European Union
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Coelli, Tim; Pestieau, Pierre ULg

in CESifo Economic Studies (2010), 56(2), 300-322

In this article, we use data on five social inclusion indicators (poverty, inequality, unemployment, <br />education and health) to assess and compare the performance of 15 European <br />welfare states ... [more ▼]

In this article, we use data on five social inclusion indicators (poverty, inequality, unemployment, <br />education and health) to assess and compare the performance of 15 European <br />welfare states (EU15) over a 12-year period from 1995 to 2006. Aggregate measures of <br />performance are obtained using index number methods similar to those employed in the <br />construction of the widely used Human Development Index. These are compared with <br />alternative measures derived from data envelopment analysis methods. The influence of <br />methodology choice and the assumptions made in scaling indicators upon the results <br />obtained is illustrated and discussed. We then analyse the evolution of performance <br />over time, finding evidence of some convergence in performance and no sign of social <br />dumping. [less ▲]

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See detailThe effects of early retirement on youth unemployment: the case of Belgium
Jousten, Alain ULg; Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg; Pestieau, Pierre ULg et al

in Gruber, Jonathan; Wise, David (Eds.) Social Security Programs and Retirement around the World: The Relationship to Youth Employment (2010)

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See detailDisability in Belgium: There is More than Meets the Eye
Jousten, Alain ULg; Perelman, Sergio ULg; Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Report (2010)

The paper provides a perspective on the development of the Belgian disability insurance system. Using both survey and administrative data, it sketches a picture of the (changing) factors leading towards ... [more ▼]

The paper provides a perspective on the development of the Belgian disability insurance system. Using both survey and administrative data, it sketches a picture of the (changing) factors leading towards disability, as well as the outcomes in terms of program participation. The paper shows the key role of integrating other forms of early retirement programs into the analysis. The main findings are an unspectacular trend in the number of DI beneficiaries over time combined with a strong expansion of (early-) retirement schemes. [less ▲]

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See detailMesurer et comparer le bien-être des personnes âgées dans l’UE
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

in Revue Française d'Economie (2010), XXV(1), 213-227

Dans cet article, nous proposons une méthode de mesure multidimensionnelle du bien-être des personnes âgées dans l’UE au cours de la dernière décennie. Cette méthode agrège un certain nombre de facettes ... [more ▼]

Dans cet article, nous proposons une méthode de mesure multidimensionnelle du bien-être des personnes âgées dans l’UE au cours de la dernière décennie. Cette méthode agrège un certain nombre de facettes du bien-être, à savoir les niveaux moyen et relatif de revenus, les taux de pauvreté et d’inégalité, l’espérance de vie et la santé. Cette mesure synthétique permet de comparer les pays européens, d’étudier l’évolution et l’éventuelle convergence du niveau de bien-être des personnes âgées, qui connaissent des moments difficiles avec le vieillissement démographique et la crise financière de nombreux systèmes de retraite. [less ▲]

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See detailUnemployment and retirement in a model with age-specific heterogeneity
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Conference (2009, December)

This paper presents a model where young and old workers compete for one type of jobs in the presence of retirement opportunity. Within this framework, we show that increased retirement opportunities (such ... [more ▼]

This paper presents a model where young and old workers compete for one type of jobs in the presence of retirement opportunity. Within this framework, we show that increased retirement opportunities (such as early retirement) has most of the time a depressing impact on the unemployment rate. Indeed the number of vacancies posted by fi rms is influenced by the probability that an old worker is going into retirement. We show that the degree to which younger workers are influenced by retirement of older workers depends on the relative productivity of young and older workers. It is only when older workers are much more productive than young workers that retirement may bene fit to unemployment. [less ▲]

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See detailUnemployment and retirement in a model with age-specific heterogeneity
Lefebvre, Mathieu ULg

Scientific conference (2009, February)

Detailed reference viewed: 11 (4 ULg)