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Wages and Profits in Manufacturing Firms: Matched-Panel Evidence from Brazil

  • Pedro S. Martins

    (School of Business and Management, Queen Mary, University of London, United Kingdom)

  • Luiz A. Esteves

    (Department of Economics & Graduate Program of Public Policy, UFPR, Brazil)

We provide evidence about the determinants of the wage structures of developing countries by examining the case of Brazil. Our specific question is whether Brazil’s dramatic income and wage differentials can be explained by the division of rents between firms and their employees, unlike in competitive labour markets. Using detailed individual-level matched panel data, covering a large share of manufacturing firms and more than 30 million workers between 1997 and 2002, we consider the endogeneity of profits, by adopting different measures of profits and different instruments and by controlling for spell fixed effects. Our results, robust to different specifications and tests,indicate no evidence of rent sharing. This conclusion contrasts with findings for most developed countries, even those with flexible labour markets. Possible explanations for the lack of rent sharing include the weakness of labour-market institutions, the high levelsof worker turnover and the macroeconomic instability faced by the country

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File URL: http://www.anpec.org.br/revista/vol13/vol13n3bp815_841.pdf
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Article provided by ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics] in its journal Economia.

Volume (Year): 13 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3b ()
Pages: 815_841

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Handle: RePEc:anp:econom:v:13:y:2012:i:3b:815_841
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  1. Van Reenen, John, 1994. "The Creation and Capture of Rents: Wages and Innovation in a Panel of UK Companies," CEPR Discussion Papers 1071, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Naércio Aquino Menezes Filho & Marc-Andreas Muendler & Garey Ramey, 2006. "The Structure of Worker Compensation in Brazil, with a Comparison to France and the United States," CESifo Working Paper Series 1643, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Hildreth, Andrew K G & Oswald, Andrew J, 1997. "Rent-Sharing and Wages: Evidence from Company and Establishment Panels," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 318-37, April.
  4. Rita Almeida & Pedro Carneiro, 2006. "Enforcement of regulation, informal labor and firm performance," CeMMAP working papers CWP02/06, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  5. Mahmood Arai, 2003. "Wages, Profits, and Capital Intensity: Evidence from Matched Worker-Firm Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(3), pages 593-618, July.
  6. Ferreira, Francisco H. G. & Leite, Phillippe G. & Litchfield, Julie A., 2006. "The rise and fall of Brazilian inequality, 1981-2004," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3867, The World Bank.
  7. Juan Botero & Simeon Djankov & Rafael Porta & Florencio C. Lopez-De-Silanes, 2004. "The Regulation of Labor," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1339-1382, November.
  8. Pedro Martins, 2009. "Rent sharing before and after the wage bill," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(17), pages 2133-2151.
  9. Blanchflower, David G & Oswald, Andrew J & Sanfey, Peter, 1996. "Wages, Profits, and Rent-Sharing," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(1), pages 227-51, February.
  10. Eduardo Pontual Ribeiro & Carlos Corseuil & Daniel Santos & Paulo Furtado & Brunu Amorim & Luciana Servo & Andre Souza, 2004. "Trade liberalization, the exchange rate and job flows in Brazil," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 7(4), pages 209-223.
  11. Pedro S. Martins & Luiz A. Esteves, 2008. "Is There Rent Sharing in Developing Countries? Matched-Panel Evidence from Brazil," Working Papers 14, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Business and Management, Centre for Globalisation Research.
  12. Stephen G. Bronars & Melissa Famulari, 2001. "Shareholder Wealth and Wages: Evidence for White-Collar Workers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(2), pages 328-354, April.
  13. Arai, Mahmood & Heyman, Fredrik, 2001. "Wages, Profits and Individual Unemployment Risk : Evidence from Matched Worker-Firm Data," Working Paper Series 172, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
  14. Francis Teal, 1995. "The size and sources of economic rents in a developing country manufacturing labour market," CSAE Working Paper Series 1995-06, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  15. Gustavo Gonzaga, 2003. "Labor Turnover and Labor Legislation in Brazil," Textos para discussão 475, Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil).
  16. repec:fgv:epgrbe:v:58:n:2:a:2 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Jorge Saba Arbache & Andy Dickerson & Francis Green, 2004. "Trade Liberalisation and Wages in Developing Countries," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(493), pages F73-F96, 02.
  18. Sandra E. Black & Philip E. Strahan, 2001. "The Division of Spoils: Rent-Sharing and Discrimination in a Regulated Industry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 814-831, September.
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