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Relative wage setting, contracts and unemployment during the deflations of 1920-22 and 1931-34 in Sweden

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Author Info

  • Fregert, Klas

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Lund University)

Abstract

Recent research on the Great Depression has concluded that a worldwide decline in aggregate demand, emanating from the United States, was propagated into a fall in real activity through sticky nominal wages. The question remains: Why were nominal wages so sticky? I examine two hypotheses based on relative wage setting. Based on a wide range of evidence for Sweden, I argue that the 1920-22 depression is compatible with the staggered wage contract model and the 1930s depression with the co-ordination failure model.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Lund University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1999:2.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: 04 Mar 1999
Date of revision: 21 Apr 1999
Publication status: Published in Deflation. Current and historical perspectives., Burdekin, Richard, Siklos, Pierre (eds.), 2004, chapter 4, pages 91-130, Cambridge University Press.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:lunewp:1999_002

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Lund University, Box 7082, S-220 07 Lund,Sweden
Phone: +46 +46 222 0000
Fax: +46 +46 2224613
Web page: http://www.nek.lu.se/en
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Related research

Keywords: Wage contracts; Fischer-Taylor model; unemployment; Sweden; Depression; relative wage setting;

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References

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  1. John B. Taylor, 1982. "Union Wage Settlements During a Disinflation," NBER Working Papers 0985, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Cooper, Russell & John, Andrew, 1988. "Coordinating Coordination Failures in Keynesian Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 441-63, August.
  3. Ray C. Fair & John B. Taylor, 1980. "Solution and Maximum Likelihood Estimation of Dynamic Nonlinear Rational Expectations Models," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 564, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  4. Bernanke, Ben S & Carey, Kevin, 1996. "Nominal Wage Stickiness and Aggregate Supply in the Great Depression," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(3), pages 853-83, August.
  5. Bhaskar, V, 1990. "Wage Relativities and the Natural Range of Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(400), pages 60-66, Supplemen.
  6. Ben S. Bernanke, 1994. "The Macroeconomics of the Great Depression: A Comparative Approach," NBER Working Papers 4814, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Robert J. Flanagan, 1976. "Wage Interdependence in Unionized Labor Markets," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 7(3), pages 635-682.
  8. Michael D. Bordo & Christopher J. Erceg & Charles L. Evans, 1997. "Money, sticky wages, and the Great Depression," International Finance Discussion Papers 591, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  9. repec:nbr:nberre:0126 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
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