One of the four models of employment and social welfare adopted by countries OECD, as identified in a typography developed by Belgian economist André Sapir. Countries with 'Anglo-Saxon model' policies include Britain, New Zealand and to a lesser extent Australia and Ireland. Some countries in Eastern Europe are looking at transforming their economies towards this model. Sometimes this is called the 'neo-liberal model'.

These countries typically have:

  • means-tested social assistance policies designed to serve as a safety net.
  • redistributive cash transfers to the working population through a variety of means-tested measures.
  • unregulated labour markets.
  • weak unions.
  • high income inequality, possibly without a minimum wage.
  • low ratios of public debt to gross domestic product.

    Anglo-Saxon model countries enjoy low rates of unemployment at the cost of large social inequality. Statistically speaking, the rate of poverty comes close to Rhineland model countries when taking into consideration the effects of redistribution through transfers. However, poverty can be acutely felt by the working poor - people with low disposable incomes who nevertheless cannot access social security payments.

    Of the four models, the Anglo-Saxon model would be the most attractive to high income earners. While this model is the most sustainable, it can be a political nightmare to invoke policies that simultaneously weaken labour protection and accessibility to income support.

    The policies in most parts of the United States fits in with this model. However their general lack unemployment benefits is distinctive enough to make them fit in their own category.

    See also:
    Nordic model
    Mediterranean model
    Rhineland model

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