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Produttivita' e flessibilita': una critica alle ricette della BCE. Minori tutele del lavoro e contenimento salariale favoriscono la crescita della produttivita' del lavoro?

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  • Paolo Pini

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Abstract

La BCE suggerisce che le retribuzioni nominali del lavoro debbano crescere in linea con la produttività dei lavoratori, e non oltre questa. I Paesi "viziosi" che non rispettano questa regola perdono progressivamente competitività . Questa è la "regola di piombo" per la distribuzione del reddito, contrapposta alla "regola d’oro" che lascia invariate le quote distributive tra lavoro e capitale. La "regola di piombo" significa svalutazioni competitive interne, a carico del lavoro e del reddito dei lavoratori, ed una distribuzione del reddito sempre più diseguale. La BCE inoltre suggerisce che occorra proseguire lungo la strada delle riforme strutturali, ad iniziare da quelle che devono deregolamentare il mercato del lavoro: più flessibilità in entrata ed in uscita e riduzione delle tutele sul posto di lavoro per aumentare quelle sul mercato. È anche questa una ricetta che si prosegue da anni, ma che i dati mostrano che non si accompagna ad una ripresa della produttività ; semmai avviene l’opposto, con minore crescita della produttività che si associa a maggiore flessibilità esterna, nel mercato del lavoro. Al contempo una maggiore flessibilità interna all’impresa, con innovazione nei luoghi di lavoro, appare una strada alternativa alla precedente, che si coniuga a maggiore produttività . Ma questo la BCE non lo dice, disconoscendo le numerose e robuste evidenze della letteratura economica più recente. La BCE sembra afflitta da miopia: vede sfocati i fattori di medio-lungo periodo (l’innovazione) che davvero contano, e si concentra sui fattori di breve (la flessibilità di mercato) che però non sembrano favorire la competitività e la ripresa della produttività . English version: Wages and productivity. A criticism to the recipes of the ECB The ECB suggests that hourly nominal wages should increase in line with real hourly labour productivity, and not exceed it. The "vicious" countries which do not follow this rule loose progressively competitiveness. This is the "rule of lead" for income distribution, contrasting with the “role of gold†that leaves unchanged the labour share on national income. The "rule of lead" means domestic competitive devaluation, against workers and labour income, and income distribution with even more inequality. The ECB suggests also to go ahead with structural reform, to start with more deregulation of labour market: more market flexibility and less protections in the job for more protection in the market. This policy is what has been adopted in the last decade and more by the great part of industrialized countries, without any gains in productivity and competitiveness. In fact, data show that more market flexibility is associated to weak productivity growth. By contrast, more internal flexibility, within the firm, with innovations in work organization, seems an alternative road which goes hand in hands with higher productivity. But the ECB does not seem interested in stressing this point, ignoring large and robust evidence of the recent economic literature. The ECB seems suffer from myopia: it sees out of focus medium and long-run factors (innovation) that really make the difference, and focus mainly on short-run factors (market flexibility) which however do not positively affect competitiveness and productivity recovery.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Ferrara, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2013122.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: 01 May 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:udf:wpaper:2013122

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Keywords: Employment protection; nominal and real wages; productivity; income distribution;

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