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Ten Years Of Mrs T.

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Author Info

  • BEAN, C.
  • SYMONS, J.

Abstract

We argue that the 1970s were characterized by attempts to maintain a cooperative, low unemployment equilibrium in the face of considerable union power, through use of incomes policies and neo-corporatist machinery. The 1980s saw a shift away from this, towards direct measures to limit union power. This, together with the adoption of tight macroeconomic policies, explains the initial rise in unemployment. The reduction in union power also helps to explain the acceleration in productivity growth. The craft nature of much of the British union movement has led to a multiplication of bargaining units wihin firms. Bargaining in isolation a union can perceive overmanning and other restrictive practices as being in its intrests, resulting in low wages and productivity. A fall in union power results in a reduction in these inefficiencies and leads not only to a rise in productivity but also in wages.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics in its series Papers with number 370.

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Length: 76 pages
Date of creation: 1990
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fth:lseple:370

Contact details of provider:
Postal: LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND POLITICAL SCIENCE, CENTER FOR LABOUR ECONOMICS, HOUGHTON STREET LONDON WC2A 2AE ENGLAND.
Phone: +44 (020) 7405 7686
Web page: http://www.lse.ac.uk/
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Related research

Keywords: trade unions ; macroeconomics ; labour market ; wages;

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References

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  1. Minford, Patrick & Ashton, Paul, 1991. "The Poverty Trap and the Laffer Curve--What Can the GHS Tell Us?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 43(2), pages 245-79, April.
  2. Newell, A. & Symons, J., 1989. "The Passing Of The Golden Age," Papers 347, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
  3. repec:sae:niesru:v:97:y:1981:i:1:p:83-83 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Wadhwani, Sushil & Wall, Martin, 1986. "The UK Capital Stock--New Estimates of Premature Scrapping," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 2(3), pages 44-55, Autumn.
  5. repec:sae:niesru:v:126:y::i:1:p:57-70 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J, 1988. "Cooperation, Harassment, and Involuntary Unemployment: An Insider-Outsider Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 167-88, March.
  7. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," Working papers 427, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  8. Bean, C. & Gavosto, A., 1989. "Outsiders, Capacity Shortages And Unemployment In The United Kingdom," Papers 332, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
  9. S.J. Prais & Karin Wagner, 1988. "Productivity and Management: the Training of Foremen in Britain and Germany," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 123(1), pages 34-46, February.
  10. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Kiyotaki, Nobuhiro, 1987. "Monopolistic Competition and the Effects of Aggregate Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 647-66, September.
  11. Robert E. Hall, 1986. "Market Structure and Macroeconomic Fluctuations," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 17(2), pages 285-338.
  12. Oswald, Andrew J & Turnbull, Peter J, 1985. "Pay and Employment Determination in Britain: What Are Labour," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 1(2), pages 80-97, Summer.
  13. Jackman, R & Roper, S, 1987. "Structural Unemployment," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(1), pages 9-36, February.
  14. Gottfries, Nils & Horn, Henrik, 1987. "Wage Formation and the Persistence of Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 97(388), pages 877-84, December.
  15. William H. Buiter & Marcus Miller, 1981. "The Thatcher Experiment: The First Two Years," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 12(2), pages 315-380.
  16. Newell, A. & Symons, J. S. V., 1987. "Corporatism, laissez-faire and the rise in unemployment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 567-601, April.
  17. Willem H. Buiter & Marcus Miller, 1983. "Changing the Rules: Economic Consequences of the Thatcher Regime," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 14(2), pages 305-380.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Nelson, Edward, 2001. "What Does the UK's Monetary Policy and Inflation Experience Tell Us About the Transmission Mechanism?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3047, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Erik Britton & Jens D J Larsen & Ian Small, 2000. "Imperfect competition and the dynamics of mark-ups," Bank of England working papers 110, Bank of England.
  3. Gianluigi Pelloni & Wolfgang Polasek, 2003. "Macroeconomic Effects of Sectoral Shocks in Germany, The U.K. and, The U.S.: A VAR-GARCH-M Approach," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 21(1_2), pages 65-85, 02.
  4. Paul Beaudry & Mustafa Caglayan & Fabio Schiantarelli, 2001. "Monetary Instability, the Predictability of Prices, and the Allocation of Investment: An Empirical Investigation Using U.K. Panel Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 648-662, June.
  5. Kevin Denny, 1997. "Productivity and trade unions in British manufacturing industry 1973-85," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(10), pages 1403-1409.
  6. Manfred Keil & Andrew Newell, 1993. "Internal migration and unemployment in Germany: An anglo-irish perspective," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 129(3), pages 514-536, September.
  7. Lynde, Catherine & Richmond, J., 1998. "Productivity and efficiency in the UK: a time series application of DEA," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 105-122, January.
  8. Nicholas Crafts & Mary O'Mahony, 2001. "A perspective on UK productivity performance," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 22(3), pages 271-306, September.
  9. Manfred Keil & Louis Pantuosco, 1998. "Canadian and US Unemployment Rates: A Comparison Based on Regional Data," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 24(s1), pages 38-55, February.
  10. Edward Nelson & Kalin Nikolov, 2001. "UK inflation in the 1970s and 1980s: the role of output gap mismeasurement," Bank of England working papers 148, Bank of England.
  11. Mills, Terence C. & Pelloni, Gianluigi & Zervoyianni, Athina, 1996. "Cyclical unemployment and sectoral shifts: Further tests of the Lilien hypothesis for the UK," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 55-60, July.
  12. Ian Small, 1997. "The cyclicality of Mark-ups and Profit Margins: Some Evidence for Manufacturing and Services," Bank of England working papers 72, Bank of England.

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