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Heterogeneity In Real Wage Cyclicality

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  • Pedro S. Martins

Abstract

This paper presents evidence that real wage cyclicality can be a particularly heterogeneous parameter, depending on different worker characteristics and also on the specific stage of the business cycle. Using matched employer-employee panel data for Portugal covering the period 1986-2004, real wages are shown to be considerably more procyclical during recessions than during expansions, resulting in relatively moderate overall levels of cyclicality (about -0.6). However, most of the procyclicality during downturns is shown to be driven by the younger employees, as older workers appear to be insulated from the business cycle. Moreover, movers between firms typically display higher cyclicality than workers that stay in the same firm, regardless of whether the latter move or not between job levels. Most results also hold when considering basic wages instead of total wages, except that the procyclicality of movers during downturns is substantially higher.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Scottish Economic Society in its journal Scottish Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 54 (2007)
Issue (Month): 5 (November)
Pages: 684-698

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Handle: RePEc:bla:scotjp:v:54:y:2007:i:5:p:684-698

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  1. Eric T. Swanson, 2007. "Real wage cyclicality in the PSID," Working Paper Series, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco 2007-15, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  2. Moulton, Brent R., 1986. "Random group effects and the precision of regression estimates," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 385-397, August.
  3. Donggyun Shin & Gary Solon, 2007. "New Evidence On Real Wage Cyclicality Within Employer-Employee Matches," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 54(5), pages 648-660, November.
  4. Robert Shimer, 2005. "The cyclicality of hires, separations, and job-to-job transitions," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 493-508.
  5. Pedro S. Martins, 2008. "Rent Sharing Before and After the Wage Bill," Working Papers 12, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Business and Management, Centre for Globalisation Research.
  6. Solon, Gary & Barsky, Robert & Parker, Jonathan A, 1994. "Measuring the Cyclicality of Real Wages: How Important Is Composition Bias?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 109(1), pages 1-25, February.
  7. Abowd, J.M. & Kramarz, F. & Margolis, D.N., 1995. "High-Wage Workers and High-Wage Firms," Cahiers de recherche, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ 9503, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  8. Paul J. Devereux, 2001. "The Cyclicality of real wages within employer-employee matches," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 54(4), pages 835-850, July.
  9. Pedro Portugal & Olivier Blanchard, 2001. "What Hides Behind an Unemployment Rate: Comparing Portuguese and U.S. Labor Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 187-207, March.
  10. Varejão, José & Portugal, Pedro, 2006. "Employment Dynamics and the Structure of Labor Adjustment Costs," IZA Discussion Papers 1922, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Beaudry, Paul & DiNardo, John, 1991. "The Effect of Implicit Contracts on the Movement of Wages over the Business Cycle: Evidence from Micro Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 665-88, August.
  12. Hart, Robert A., 2003. "Worker-Job Matches, Job Mobility, and Real Wage Cyclicality," IZA Discussion Papers 881, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Lazear, Edward P, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726, August.
  14. Devereux, Paul J. & Hart, Robert A., 2005. "Real Wage Cyclicality of Job Stayers, Within-Company Job Movers, and Between-Company Job Movers," IZA Discussion Papers 1651, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  15. Anabela Carneiro & Pedro Portugal, 2004. "Workers' Flows and Real Wage Cyclicality," CEF.UP Working Papers, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto 0402, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
  16. Bils, Mark J, 1985. "Real Wages over the Business Cycle: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(4), pages 666-89, August.
  17. Katharine G. Abraham & John C. Haltiwanger, 1995. "Real Wages and the Business Cycle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 33(3), pages 1215-1264, September.
  18. Barlevy, Gadi, 2001. "Why Are the Wages of Job Changers So Procyclical?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(4), pages 837-78, October.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Martins, Pedro S. & Solon, Gary & Thomas, Jonathan P., 2010. "Measuring What Employers Really Do about Entry Wages over the Business Cycle," IZA Discussion Papers 4757, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Anabela Carneiro & Paulo Guimaraes & Pedro Portugal, 2009. "Real Wages and the Business Cycle: Accounting for Worker and Firm Heterogeneity," CEF.UP Working Papers, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto 0903, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
  3. Anger, Silke, 2011. "The Cyclicality of Effective Wages within Employer–Employee Matches in a Rigid Labor Market," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 786-797.
  4. Pedro S. Martins, 2011. "Paying More To Hire The Best? Foreign Firms, Wages, And Worker Mobility," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 49(2), pages 349-363, 04.
  5. Pedro S. Martins & Gary Solon & Jonathan P. Thomas, 2012. "Measuring What Employers Do about Entry Wages over the Business Cycle: A New Approach," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 36-55, October.
  6. Martins, Pedro S., 2008. "Dispersion in wage premiums and firm performance," Economics Letters, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 101(1), pages 63-65, October.

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