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Exporters and the Rise in Wage Inequality – Evidence from German Linked Employer-Employee Data

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  • Daniel Baumgarten

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Abstract

Using a linked employer-employee data set of the German manufacturing sector, this paper analyses the role of exporting establishments in explaining rising wage dispersion. Over the period of analysis (1996–2007), the raw wage differential between exporters and domestic establishments increased substantially, which can only partly be attributed to corresponding changes in human capital endowments and the returns to them. These findings are consistent with recent heterogeneous-fi rm trade models that feature an exporter wage premium as well as variability of the premium with respect to increasing trade liberalization. A decomposition analysis shows that the increase in the conditional wage gap indeed contributed to rising wage inequality both within and between skill groups. In contrast, the growing employment share of exporters contributed to a reduction in wage dispersion.

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Paper provided by Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen in its series Ruhr Economic Papers with number 0217.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0217

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Keywords: Exports; wages; exporter wage premium; wage inequality; linked employer-employee data; decomposition;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Stephen Redding & Oleg Itskhoki & Marc-Andreas Muendler & Elhanan Helpman, 2012. "Trade and Inequality: From Theory to Estimation," 2012 Meeting Papers 135, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Macis, Mario & Schivardi, Fabiano, 2012. "Exports and Wages: Rent Sharing, Workforce Composition or Returns to Skills?," CEPR Discussion Papers 8931, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Felbermayr, Gabriel & Impullitti, Giammario & Prat, Julien, 2014. "Firm Dynamics and Residual Inequality in Open Economies," CEPR Discussion Papers 9855, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Joachim Wagner, 2011. "International Trade and Firm Performance: A Survey of Empirical Studies since 2006," Working Paper Series in Economics 210, University of Lüneburg, Institute of Economics.
  5. Fu, Dahai & Wu, Yanrui, 2013. "Export wage premium in China's manufacturing sector: A firm level analysis," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(C), pages 182-196.
  6. Philip Du Caju & François Rycx & Ilan Tojerow, 2012. "Wage structure effects of international trade in a small open economy: the case of Belgium," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 148(2), pages 297-331, June.
  7. Achim Schmillen, 2011. "The Exporter Wage Premium Reconsidered Destinations, Distances and Linked Employer-Employee Data," Working Papers 305, Institut für Ost- und Südosteuropaforschung (Institute for East and South-East European Studies).
  8. Gabriel Felbermayr & Mario Larch, 2014. "Transatlantic Free Trade: Questions and Answers from the Vantage Point of Trade Theory," CESifo Forum, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 14(4), pages 03-17, 01.

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