Over-indebtedness in Europe: The relevance of country-level variables for the over-indebtedness of private households

Stefan Angel, Karin Heitzmann

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review

Abstract

So far, research on the causes of over-indebtedness in Europe has predominantly focused on the characteristics of individuals or households. This article investigates to what extent country-level factors are associated with a European household's risk of being over-indebted. We examine variables that reflect policies aimed at combating over-indebtedness (the average level of economic literacy prevalent within a country and its classification into a specific debt-discharge regime) and variables that reflect other welfare-state policies (a country's affiliation to a specific employment regime and a summary measure referring to the net replacement rate in the case of long-term unemployment). The results, which are based on multilevel logistic regression analyses of European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) data for 27 European countries, suggest that all four country-level factors matter. This particularly applies to the variables reflecting other welfare-state policies, thus underlining the relevance of the design of social policy in fighting over-indebtedness.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331 - 351
JournalJournal of European Social Policy
Volume25
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Austrian Classification of Fields of Science and Technology (ÖFOS)

  • 504003 Poverty and social exclusion

Cite this