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Wage and Labor Mobility in Denmark, 1980-2000

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  • Tor Eriksson
  • Niels Westergaard-Nielsen

Abstract

This paper consists of three parts. First, we briefly describe some key features of the labor market in Denmark, some of which contribute to the Danish labor markets behaving quite differently from those in many other European countries. The next two parts exploit detailed linked employer-employee data. In the second part we document in some detail an important aspect of the functioning and flexibility of the labor markets in Denmark: the high level of worker mobility. We show that mobility is about as high, or even higher, as in the highly fluid U.S. labor market. Finally, we describe and examine the wage structure between and within firms and changes therein since 1980, especially with an eye on possible impacts of the trend towards a more decentralized wage determination. The shift towards decentralized wage bargaining has coincided with deregulation and increased product market competition. The evidence is, however, not consistent with stronger competition in product markets eroding firm-specific rents. Hence, the prime suspect is the change in wage setting institutions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 13064.

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Date of creation: Apr 2007
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Publication status: published as Lazear, Edward P. and Kathryn L. Shaw (eds.) The Structure of Wages: An International Comparison, A National Bureau of Economic Research Conference Report. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 2008.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13064

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  1. Anders Frederiksen & Niels Westergaard-Nielsen, 2002. "Where did they go?," 10th International Conference on Panel Data, Berlin, July 5-6, 2002 D3-2, International Conferences on Panel Data.
  2. Nabanita Datta Gupta & Donna S. Rothstein, 2005. "The Impact of Worker and Establishment-level Characteristics on Male-Female Wage Differentials: Evidence from Danish Matched Employee-Employer Data," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 19(1), pages 1-34, 03.
  3. Katz, Lawrence F. & Autor, David H., 1999. "Changes in the wage structure and earnings inequality," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 26, pages 1463-1555 Elsevier.
  4. Neumann, George & Pedersen, Peder J. & Westergard-Nielsen, Niels, 1991. "Long-run international trends in aggregate unionization," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 249-274, October.
  5. Bolvig, Iben, 2004. "Within- and between-firm mobility in the low-wage labour market," Working Papers 04-11, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
  6. Cuñat, Vicente & Guadalupe, Maria, 2006. "Globalization and the Provision of Incentives Inside the Firm," CEPR Discussion Papers 5950, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Bingley, Paul & Lanot, Gauthier, 2004. "Employer pay policies, public transfers and the retirement decisions of men and women in Denmark," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 181-200, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Colm McLaughlin, 2007. "The productivity enhancing Impacts of the Minimum Wage: Lessons from Denmark, New Zealand and Ireland," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp342, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
  2. Frederiksen, Anders & Halliday, Timothy J. & Koch, Alexander K., 2010. "Within- and Cross-Firm Mobility and Earnings Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 5163, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Rikke Ibsen & Elisabetta Trevisan & Niels Westergaard-Nielsen, 2008. "Job Mobility and Skill Transferability. Some Evidences from Denmark and a Large Italian Region," Working Papers 2008_40, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
  4. Frederiksen, Anders & Halliday, Timothy J. & Koch, Alexander K., 2010. "What Do We Work For? An Anatomy of Pre- and Post-Tax Earnings Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 5298, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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