Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Theories of Wage Rigidity

Contents:

Author Info

  • Joseph E. Stiglitz

Abstract

This paper considers two sets of theories attempting to explain wage rigidities and unemployment: implicit contract theory and the efficiency wage theory. The basic thesis of the paper is that the former set of theories do not provide a convincing explanation of the kind of wage rigidity which is associated with cyclical unemployment,while the latter theories do. Several of the more recent versions of implicit contract theory are considered: implicit contracts with asymmetric information may give rise to over employment rather than underemployment, and the forms of contracts to be expected, were asymmetric information considerations paramount, are not observed.Other versions of the asymmetric information implicit contract model, explicitly long term in nature, may give rise to full employment. One version of implicit contract theory which does give rise to lay-offs arises when search is costly and cannot be monitored. But even this extension does not explain certain important features of observed patterns of unemployment. In contrast, the efficiency wage models not only provide an explanation of the existence of unemployment equilibrium in competitive economies, but they also provide part of the explanation of the observed patterns of unemployment. They also explain why different firms may pay similar workers different wages, why wages may be sticky, why firms maynot loose much if they fail to adjust their wages, and why, when they adjust their wages optimally, they adjust them slowly.The policy implications of the efficiency wage model are markedly different from those of models in which wages are absolutely rigid aswell as from those in which unemployment arises from asymmetric information.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w1442.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 1442.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: Sep 1984
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Stiglitz, Joseph E. "Theories of Wage Rigidity. "Keynes' Economic Legacy: Contemporary Economic theories, ed James L. Butkiewicz, Kenneth J. Koford,and Jeffrey B. Miller, pp. 153-206. New York: Praeger Publishers, 1986.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1442

Note: EFG
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Email:
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords:

References

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1442. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.