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Why Are Japanese Wages so Sluggish?

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  • Martin Sommer

Abstract

Over the past decade, productivity-adjusted wages have grown at a slower pace in Japan than in other rich countries. This paper suggests that Japan''s dualities between regular and "nonregular" labor market contracts and the relatively inefficient services sector have exacerbated the negative impact of globalization and technical change on the labor income share felt in all advanced economies. Reforms aimed at increasing productivity in services and reducing gaps in employment protection and benefits between regular and nonregular workers could help put Japan''s wages on an upward trajectory in the medium term.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 09/97.

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Length: 21
Date of creation: 01 May 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:09/97

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Related research

Keywords: Productivity; Developed countries; Labor markets; Employment; Aging; Labor market reforms; Economic models; wage; wages; labor income; part-time employment; employment protection; regular employment; benefits; compensation; unemployment; temporary employment; total employment; employment outlook; unemployment benefits; wage increases; employment protection legislation; skilled labor; high unemployment; compensation packages; employment prospects; employment data; worker; labor participation; re-employment; employment patterns; full-time employee; employment level; low unemployment; employment increase;

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

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  1. Samuel Bentolila & Gilles Saint Paul, 1999. "Explaining movements in the labor share," Economics Working Papers, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra 374, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  2. Robert C. Feenstra, 2007. "Globalization and Its Impact on Labour," wiiw Working Papers, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw 44, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
  3. Oliver J. Blanchard, 1997. "The Medium Run," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(2), pages 89-158.
  4. Andrea Bassanini & Romain Duval, 2006. "Employment Patterns in OECD Countries: Reassessing the Role of Policies and Institutions," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 35, OECD Publishing.
  5. Florence Jaumotte & Irina Tytell, 2007. "How Has the Globalization of Labor Affected the Labor Income Share in Advanced Countries?," IMF Working Papers 07/298, International Monetary Fund.
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