Self-Employed but Looking: A Labor Market Experiment
View PDF Version
Empirical studies have shown that entrepreneurs earn, on average, less than the market wage for employees with otherwise similar characteristics. We examine whether having previously been self-employed is in itself a negative signal on the job market. In a field experiment where two applications of otherwise equally qualified individuals were sent for the same vacancies, we find that entrepreneurs systematically receive fewer responses than non-entrepreneurs. Thus, it appears that the earnings differential is partially explained by the fact that entrepreneurs do not have access to the reference jobs in practice. We discuss what type of unfavorable information self-employment may carry.
- L26 : Entrepreneurship
- J71 : Discrimination
- M00 : Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting: General
- J62 : Job, Occupational, and Intergenerational Mobility
- C93 : Field Experiments