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The Bilateral Relationship between Depressive Symptoms and Employment Status

Melisa Bubonya (), Deborah Cobb-Clark () and David Ribar ()
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Melisa Bubonya: Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research

No 10653, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: This paper analyzes the bilateral relationship between depressive symptoms and employment status. We find that severe depressive symptoms are partially a consequence of economic inactivity. The incidence of depressive symptoms is higher if individuals have been out of a job for an extended period. Men's mental health falls as they exit the labor force, while women's worsens only after they have been out of the labor force for a period of time. Entering unemployment is also associated with a substantial deterioration in mental health, particularly for men. We also find that severe depressive symptoms, in turn, lead to economic inactivity. Individuals are less likely to be labor force participants or employed if they experience severe depressive symptoms. Men's probability of being unemployed rises dramatically with the onset of depressive symptoms; women's unemployment is increased by protracted depressive symptoms.

Keywords: depressive symptoms; HILDA survey; labor market status; unemployment; mental health; depression (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J01 J64 I14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem, nep-hea, nep-lab and nep-ltv
Date: 2017-03
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Published in: Economics & Human Biology, 2019, 35, 96-106

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