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Employment and wage adjustments at firms under distress in Japan: An analysis based upon a survey

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  • Ariga, Kenn
  • Kambayashi, Ryo
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    Abstract

    We use the result from a survey of Japanese firms in manufacturing and service to investigate the choice of wage and employment adjustments when they needed to reduce substantially the total labor cost. Our regression analysis indicates that the large size reduction favors the layoffs of the core employees, whereas the base wage cuts are more likely if the firms do not feel immediate pressures from the external labor market or the strong competition in the product market. We also find some evidence that the concerns over adverse selection or demoralizing effects of wage cuts are real. Firms do try to avoid using base wage cuts if they consider these factors more important.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of the Japanese and International Economies.

    Volume (Year): 24 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2 (June)
    Pages: 213-235

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jjieco:v:24:y:2010:i:2:p:213-235

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622903

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    Keywords: Wage and employment adjustments Japanese labor market;

    References

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    1. Burgess, Simon & Knetter, Michael & Michelacci, Claudio, 2000. "Employment and Output Adjustment in the OECD: A Disaggregate Analysis of the Role of Job Security Provisions," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 67(267), pages 419-35, August.
    2. Kenji Azetsu & Mototsugu Fukushige, 2005. "The Estimation of Asymmetric Adjustment Costs for the Number of Workers and Working Hours |Empirical Evidence from Japanese Industry Data," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 05-18, Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics and Osaka School of International Public Policy (OSIPP).
    3. Ricardo J. Caballero & Takeo Hoshi & Anil K. Kashyap, 2008. "Zombie Lending and Depressed Restructuring in Japan," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1943-77, December.
    4. Kato, Takao, 2001. "The End of Lifetime Employment in Japan?: Evidence from National Surveys and Field Research," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 489-514, December.
    5. Hildreth, Andrew K. G. & Ohtake, Fumio, 1998. "Labor Demand and the Structure of Adjustment Costs in Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 131-150, June.
    6. Bertola, Giuseppe & Dabusinskas, Aurelijus & Hoeberichts, Marco & Izquierdo, Mario & Kwapil, Claudia & Montornès, Jeremi & Radowski, Daniel, 2012. "Price, wage and employment response to shocks: evidence from the WDN survey," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 783-791.
    7. Takao Kato, 2000. "The Recent Transformation of Participatory Employment Practices in Japan," NBER Working Papers 7965, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Agell, Jonas & Lundborg, Per, 1999. "Survey Evidence on Wage Rigidity and Unemployment: Sweden in the 1990s," Working Paper Series 1999:12, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    9. Kimura, Takeshi & Ueda, Kazuo, 2001. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity in Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 50-67, March.
    10. Campbell, Carl M, III & Kamlani, Kunal S, 1997. "The Reasons for Wage Rigidity: Evidence from a Survey of Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(3), pages 759-89, August.
    11. Kazuo Ogawa, 2003. "Financial Distress and Employment: The Japanese Case in the 90s," NBER Working Papers 9646, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Mincer, Jacob & Higuchi, Yoshio, 1988. "Wage structures and labor turnover in the United States and Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 97-133, June.
    13. Tachibanaki, Toshiaki, 1987. "Labour market flexibility in Japan in comparison with Europe and the U.S," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 647-678, April.
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