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Empirical Tests of Efficiency Wage Models

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Author Info

  • Huang, Tzu-Ling
  • Hallam, Arne
  • Orazem, Peter
  • Paterno, Elizabeth M.

Abstract

Two-digit manufacturing industry-level production functions are used to test efficiency wage propositions. Conclusive tests require functional forms which allow differences in elasticities of substitution between observable human capital, wage premia and other inputs. Results demonstrate that unexplained industry wage premia and higher unemployment rates raise productivity. Wage premia and the human capital wage component cannot be aggregated into a single human capital index. Nevertheless, 88% of the productivity effect associated with industry wages can be tied to observable human capital in the industry, with only 12% associated with the wage premium.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 1325.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 1998
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Publication status: Published in Economica, February 1998, vol. 65, pp. 125-143
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:1325

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
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Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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  1. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-42, June.
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  4. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1987. "The Causes and Consequences of the Dependence of Quality on Price," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(1), pages 1-48, March.
  5. Robert H. Topel, 1990. "Specific Capital, Mobility, and Wages: Wages Rise with Job Seniority," NBER Working Papers 3294, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Willis, Robert J., 1987. "Wage determinants: A survey and reinterpretation of human capital earnings functions," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 10, pages 525-602 Elsevier.
  7. Wadhwani, Sushil B & Wall, Martin, 1991. "A Direct Test of the Efficiency Wage Model Using UK Micro-data," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 43(4), pages 529-48, October.
  8. Solow, Robert M., 1979. "Another possible source of wage stickiness," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 79-82.
  9. Lawrence F. Katz, 1986. "Efficiency Wage Theories: A Partial Evaluation," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1986, Volume 1, pages 235-290 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Strauss, John, 1986. "Does Better Nutrition Raise Farm Productivity?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(2), pages 297-320, April.
  11. Krueger, Alan B & Summers, Lawrence H, 1988. "Efficiency Wages and the Inter-industry Wage Structure," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 259-93, March.
  12. Griliches, Zvi, 1969. "Capital-Skill Complementarity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 51(4), pages 465-68, November.
  13. Levine, David I, 1992. "Can Wage Increases Pay for Themselves? Tests with a Production Function," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 102(414), pages 1102-15, September.
  14. Cappelli, Peter & Chauvin, Keith, 1991. "An Interplant Test of the Efficiency Wage Hypothesis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(3), pages 769-87, August.
  15. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  16. Groshen, Erica L, 1991. "Sources of Intra-industry Wage Dispersion: How Much Do Employers Matter?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(3), pages 869-84, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Fallahi, Firouz & Sakineh, Sojoodi & Mehin Aslaninia, Nasim, 2010. "Determinants of Labor Productivity in Iran’s Manufacturing Firms: With Emphasis on Labor Education and Training," MPRA Paper 27447, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Syed Kanwar Abbas & Asad Zaman, 2005. "Efficiency Wage Hypothesis—The Case of Pakistan," The Pakistan Development Review, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, vol. 44(4), pages 1051-1066.
  3. Francis Teal & Måns Söderbom, 2002. "Does firm size really affect earnings?," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2002-08, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  4. Måns Söderbom & Francis Teal & Anthony Wambugu, 2002. "Does firm size really affect earnings?," CSAE Working Paper Series 2002-08, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  5. Carter, Thomas J., 2005. "Money and efficiency wages: the neglected effect of employment on efficiency," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 199-209, March.
  6. Bhattacharya, Joydeep & Chakraborty, Shankha, 2003. "What Do Information Frictions Do?," Staff General Research Papers 10254, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  7. K Clark & M Tomlinson, 2001. "The Determinants of Work Effort: Evidence from the Employment in Britain Survey," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 0113, Economics, The University of Manchester.

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