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Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity in Europe (new title: The costs of price stability - downward nominal wage rigidity in Europe)

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Author Info

  • Steinar Holden
  • Fredrik Wulfsberg

Abstract

This paper explores the existence of downward nominal wage rigidity (DNWR) in the industry sectors of 14 European countries, over the period 1973–1999, using a data set of hourly nominal wages at industry level. Based on a novel nonparametric statistical method, which allows for country and year-specific variation in both the median and the dispersion of industry wage changes, we reject the hypothesis of no DNWR. The fraction of wage cuts prevented due to DNWR has fallen over time, from 70 percent in the 1970s to 20 percent in the 1990s, but the number of industries affected by DNWR has increased. Wage cuts are less likely in countries and years with high inflation, low unemployment, high union density and strict employment protection legislation.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2004/wp-cesifo-2004-04/cesifo1_wp1177.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1177.

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Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1177

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Related research

Keywords: downward nominal wage rigidity; European countries; employment protection legislation;

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References

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  1. Agell, Jonas & Bennmarker, Helge, 2002. "Wage Policy and Endogenous Wage Rigidity: A Representative View from the Inside," Research Papers in Economics 2002:12, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  2. Joseph G. Altonji & Paul J. Devereux, 1999. "The Extent and Consequences of Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity," NBER Working Papers 7236, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  4. David Card & Dean Hyslop, 1995. "Does Inflation 'Grease the Wheels of the Labor Market'?," Working Papers 735, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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  6. Smith, Jennifer C, 2000. "Nominal Wage Rigidity in the United Kingdom," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages C176-95, March.
  7. Holden, Steinar & Wulfsberg, Fredrik, 2004. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity in Europe," Memorandum 08/2004, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  8. Michael W. Elsby, 2006. "Evaluating the Economic Significance of Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity," NBER Working Papers 12611, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Orietta DESSY, 2004. "Wage rigidity in Italy," Departmental Working Papers 2004-18, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  10. Lazear, Edward P, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726, August.
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  12. Holden, Steinar, 1994. "Wage bargaining and nominal rigidities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 1021-1039, May.
  13. Kahn, Shulamit, 1997. "Evidence of Nominal Wage Stickiness from Microdata," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(5), pages 993-1008, December.
  14. Wiji Arulampalam & Alison L. Booth & Mark L. Bryan, 2004. "Training in Europe," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(2-3), pages 346-360, 04/05.
  15. George A. Akerlof & William R. Dickens & George L. Perry, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Low Inflation," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(1), pages 1-76.
  16. Knoppik, Christoph & Beissinger, Thomas, 2001. "How Rigid are Nominal Wages? Evidence and Implications for Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 357, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  17. Louis N. Christofides & Man Tuen Leung, 2002. "Nominal Wage Rigidity in Contract Data: A Parametric Approach," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 0210, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.
  18. Charles Wyplosz, 2001. "Do we know how low inflation should be?," IHEID Working Papers 06-2001, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
  19. Jerry A. Hausman & Bronwyn H. Hall & Zvi Griliches, 1984. "Econometric Models for Count Data with an Application to the Patents-R&D Relationship," NBER Technical Working Papers 0017, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  21. 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.
  22. George A. Akerlof & William T. Dickens & George L. Perry, 2000. "Near-Rational Wage and Price Setting and the Long-Run Phillips Curve," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 31(1), pages 1-60.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Thomas Beissinger & Christoph Knoppik, 2006. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity in Europe: An Analysis of European Micro Data from the ECHP 1994-2001," Diskussionspapiere aus dem Institut für Volkswirtschaftslehre der Universität Hohenheim 275/2006, Department of Economics, University of Hohenheim, Germany.
  2. Pierpaolo Benigno & Luca Antonio Ricci, 2011. "The Inflation-Output Trade-Off with Downward Wage Rigidities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1436-66, June.
  3. Orietta DESSY, 2005. "Nominal wage rigidity in Europe: estimates and institutional causes," Departmental Working Papers 2005-09, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  4. Victoria V. Dobrynskaya, 2008. "The Monetary and Exchange Rate Policy of the Central Bank of Russia under Asymmetrical Price Rigidity," Journal of Innovation Economics, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(1), pages 29-62.
  5. Messina, Julián & Sanz-de-Galdeano, Anna, 2011. "Wage Rigidity and Disinflation in Emerging Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 5778, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Steinar Holden, 2004. "Wage Formation under Low Inflation," CESifo Working Paper Series 1252, CESifo Group Munich.
  7. Michał Brzoza-Brzezina & Jacek Socha, 2007. "Downward nominal wage rigidity in Poland," National Bank of Poland Working Papers 41, National Bank of Poland, Economic Institute.
  8. Linzert, Tobias, 2005. "The Unemployment Inflation Trade-Off in the Euro Area," IZA Discussion Papers 1699, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Romain Duval & Lukas Vogel, 2008. "Economic resilience to shocks: The role of structural policies," OECD Journal: Economic Studies, OECD Publishing, vol. 2008(1), pages 1-38.

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