The situation on the labor market and sickness absence: a cyclical and seasonal approach




sickness absence, unemployment, business cycle, seasonality.


Background: The subject of the research is sickness absence which, apart from a person’s health, is also shaped by other individual and contextual factors, including the situation on the labor market.

Research purpose: The aim of the article is to present how the changeability of the unemployment rate affects the absenteeism behavior of employees in Poland. We focus on two time perspectives: long-term, taking into consideration cyclical fluctuations, and medium-term, taking into consideration seasonal fluctuations.

Methods: Statistical analyses were combined using data from two sources: information on sickness absence was obtained from the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS), and information on the unemployment rate was obtained from the Central Statistical Office (GUS).

Conclusions: Based on the results, it was possible to confirm the impact of cyclical unemployment on absenteeism behavior in Poland and also to determine several premises that may indirectly prove the impact of seasonal unemployment. We also found that in the case of seasonal fluctuations, the regularities that were previously confirmed for cyclical fluctuation do not work. First, the direction of the changes is reversed. While under the business cycle, sickness absence decreases as unemployment decreases, in the seasonal cycle, the opposite is true – it increases. Second, the change in the structure of absenteeism is different. While under the business cycle, the share of short-term layoffs decreases as unemployment increases, in the seasonal cycle, the opposite happens – it increases.


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How to Cite

Jurek, Łukasz. (2021). The situation on the labor market and sickness absence: a cyclical and seasonal approach. Studia Prawno-Ekonomiczne, 120, 197–219.