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Works councils and the anatomy of wages

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  • Addison, John T.
  • Teixeira, Paulino
  • Zwick, Thomas

Abstract

This paper provides the first full examination of the effect of German works councils on wages using matched employer-employee data (specifically, the LIAB for 2001). We find that works councils are associated with higher earnings. The wage premium is around 11 percent (and is higher under collective bargaining). This result persists after taking account of worker and establishment heterogeneity and the endogeneity of works council presence. Next, using quantile regressions, we find that the works council premium is decreasing with the position of the worker in the wage distribution. And it is also higher for women than for men. Finally, the works council wage premium is associated with longer job tenure. This suggests that some of the premium is a noncompetitive rent, even if works council voice may dominate its distributive effects insofar as tenure is concerned. --

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 06-86.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:5479

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Keywords: matched employer-employee data; rent seeking; tenure; wages; wage distribution; works councils;

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References

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  1. Richard B. Freeman & Edward P. Lazear, 1994. "An Economic Analysis of Works Councils," NBER Working Papers 4918, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. 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.
  3. Farber, Henry S, 1994. "The Analysis of Interfirm Worker Mobility," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(4), pages 554-93, October.
  4. Freeman, Richard B, 1980. "The Exit-Voice Tradeoff in the Labor Market: Unionism, Job Tenure, Quits, and Separations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 643-73, June.
  5. Horst Siebert, 1997. "Labor Market Rigidities: At the Root of Unemployment in Europe," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 37-54, Summer.
  6. Card, David & de la Rica, Sara, 2004. "The Effect of Firm-Level Contracts on the Structure of Wages: Evidence from Matched Employer-Employee Data," IZA Discussion Papers 1421, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Horn, Henrik & Svensson, Lars E O, 1986. "Trade Unions and Optimal Labour Contracts," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(382), pages 323-41, June.
  8. Kölling, Arnd & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2002. "Establishment age and wages: evidence from German linked employer-employee data," Discussion Papers 13, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  9. Addison, John T. & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2003. "The Course of Research into the Economic Consequences of German Works Councils," IZA Discussion Papers 878, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Addison, John T. & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2006. "The (Parlous) State of German Unions," IZA Discussion Papers 2000, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. FitzRoy, Felix R & Kraft, Kornelius, 1985. "Unionization, Wages and Efficiency: Theories and Evidence from the U.S. and West Germany," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(4), pages 537-54.
  12. Addison, John T. & Bellmann, Lutz & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2002. "The reform of the German works constitution act: a critical assessment," Discussion Papers 16, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  13. John T. Addison & Paulino Teixeira, 2005. "The Effect of Works Councils on Employment Change," GEMF Working Papers 2005-06, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
  14. Gesine Stephan & Knut Gerlach, 2005. "Wage settlements and wage setting: results from a multi-level model," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(20), pages 2297-2306.
  15. Olaf H¸bler & Uwe Jirjahn, 2003. "Works Councils and Collective Bargaining in Germany: The Impact on Productivity and Wages," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 50(4), pages 471-491, 09.
  16. Joan Muysken & Thomas Zwick, 2006. "Wage Divergence and Unemployment: The Impact of Wage Setting Power and Training Costs," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 126(1), pages 1-19.
  17. Bellmann, Lutz & Addison, John T. & Wagner, Joachim & Schnabel, Claus, 2002. "The Long Awaited Reform of the German Works Constitution Act," IZA Discussion Papers 422, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Uwe Jirjahn, 2011. "Gender, Worker Representation and the Profitability of Firms in Germany," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 8(2), pages 281-298, December.
  2. Karsten Kohn & Alexander Lembcke, 2007. "Wage distributions by bargaining regime," AStA Wirtschafts- und Sozialstatistisches Archiv, Springer, vol. 1(3), pages 247-261, December.
  3. Göbel, Christian & Zwick, Thomas, 2010. "Which personnel measures are effective in increasing productivity of old workers?," ZEW Discussion Papers 10-069, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  4. Fitzenberger, Bernd & Kohn, Karsten & Lembcke, Alexander C., 2008. "Union Density and Varieties of Coverage: The Anatomy of Union Wage Effects in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 3356, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Karsten Kohn & Alexander Lembcke, 2007. "Wage distributions by bargaining regime: linked employer-employee data evidence from Germany," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19699, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  6. Mirella Damiani & Jens Hölscher & Fabrizio Pompei, 2011. "Labour market inequalities and the role of institutions," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 8(2), pages 163-173, December.
  7. Wolf, Elke & Heinze, Anja, 2007. "How to Limit Discrimination? Analyzing the Effects of Innovative Workplace Practices on Intra-Firm Gender Wage Gaps Using Linked Employer-Employee Data," ZEW Discussion Papers 07-077, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  8. Boockmann, Bernhard & Steffes, Susanne, 2007. "Seniority and Job Stability: A Quantile Regression Approach Using Matched Employer-Employee Data," ZEW Discussion Papers 07-014, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  9. Kornelius Kraft & Julia Lang, 2008. "The Causes and Consequences of Adopting a Works Council," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 228(5+6), pages 512-532, December.
  10. Heinze, Anja, 2010. "Beyond the mean gender wage gap: Decomposition of differences in wage distributions using quantile regression," ZEW Discussion Papers 10-043, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  11. Uwe Jirjahn, 2013. "Der Beitrag der Arbeitsmarktökonomik zur Erforschung von Gewerkschaften und Tarifvertragsbeziehungen in Deutschland," Research Papers in Economics 2013-03, University of Trier, Department of Economics.
  12. Salvatori, Andrea, 2009. "What Do Unions Do to Temporary Employment?," IZA Discussion Papers 4554, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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