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Firms' rents, workers' bargaining power and the union wage premium in France

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  • Thomas Breda

    (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - École des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC) - École normale supérieure [ENS] - Paris - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA), EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)

Abstract

In this paper, I study the wage premium associated with firm-level union recognition in France and show that this premium is due to a rent-extraction phenomenon. Using a large matched employer-employee dataset from a 2002 survey in France, I first estimate a series of wage determination models that control for individual and firm-level characteristics. I find that union recognition is associated with a 2-3% wage premium. To show that this premium results from a non-competitive phenomenon, I construct a bargaining model and estimate it empirically using a smaller but very detailed matched employer-employee dataset for 2004. The model predicts in particular that the wage premium obtained by unions should increase both with their bargaining power and with the amount of quasi-rents per worker available in the firms they organize. These predictions are validated empirically when I use the firms' market share as a proxy for their quasi-rents and the percentage of unionized as a proxy for the unions' bargaining power. All the results remain valid when I control for the firm-level workers' average productivity.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by HAL in its series PSE Working Papers with number halshs-00564903.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-00564903

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Related research

Keywords: union wage premium ; rent sharing ; bargaining;

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References

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  1. Robert Plasman & Michael Rusinek & François Rycx, 2007. "Wages and the bargaining regime under multi-level bargaining: Belgium, Denmark and Spain," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9777, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  2. Michael Rusinek & François Rycx, 2013. "Rent-Sharing under Different Bargaining Regimes: Evidence from Linked Employer–Employee Data," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 51(1), pages 28-58, 03.
  3. Luigi Guiso & Luigi Pistaferri & Fabiano Schivardi, 2002. "Insurance within the firm," 10th International Conference on Panel Data, Berlin, July 5-6, 2002 C3-1, International Conferences on Panel Data.
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  9. Aghion, Philippe & Algan, Yann & Cahuc, Pierre, 2008. "Can Policy Influence Culture? Minimum Wage and the Quality of Labor Relations," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Docweb) 0801, CEPREMAP.
  10. Marie Leclair & Pascale Petit, 2004. "Présence syndicale dans les établissements : quel effet sur les salaires masculins et féminins ?," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 371(1), pages 23-47.
  11. Ali Skalli & Mahmood Araï & Gérard Ballot, 1996. "Différentiels intersectoriels de salaire et caractéristiques des employeurs en France," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 299(1), pages 37-58.
  12. John M. ABOWD & Laurence ALLAIN, 1996. "Compensation Structure and Product Market Competition," Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, ENSAE, issue 41-42, pages 207-217.
  13. Patrice Laroche, 2004. "Présence syndicale et performance financière des entreprises:une analyse statistique sur le cas français," Revue Finance Contrôle Stratégie, revues.org, vol. 7(3), pages 117-145, September.
  14. Ana Rute Cardoso & Pedro Portugal, 2005. "Contractual Wages and the Wage Cushion under Different Bargaining Settings," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(4), pages 875-902, October.
  15. David G. Blanchflower & Alex Bryson, 2010. "The Wage Impact of Trade Unions in the UK Public and Private Sectors," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 77(305), pages 92-109, 01.
  16. David Card & Sara de la Rica, 2006. "Firm-level contracting and the structure of wages in Spain," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 59(4), pages 573-592, July.
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