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Wage bargaining in Europe: a wide range of increasingly decentralised models since the crisis


  • Clémence Berson
  • Édouard Jousselin


There is no single European wage bargaining model. Wage bargaining takes place between social partners at the national and regional level in the Nordic countries. This is also the case in Germany, despite the decentralisation of wage bargaining at industry and company level that began in the early 2000s. In Belgium, Spain, and even Italy, the government intervenes sometimes strongly in wage bargaining. In France and Portugal wage bargaining is less centralised but the minimum wage set by the government can have a significant impact on negotiated wages. Since the crisis, there has been a general trend towards decentralised wage bargaining, which enables companies to better adjust to the economic situation.

Suggested Citation

  • Clémence Berson & Édouard Jousselin, 2018. "Wage bargaining in Europe: a wide range of increasingly decentralised models since the crisis," Quarterly selection of articles - Bulletin de la Banque de France, Banque de France, issue 217, pages 1-9, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:bfr:quarte:2018:217:02

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. E. Gautier & D. Fougère & S. Roux, 2016. "The Impact of the National Minimum Wage on Industry-Level Wage Bargaining in France," Working papers 587, Banque de France.
    2. Pierre Cahuc & André Zylberberg, 1991. "Niveaux de négociations salariales et performances macroéconomiques," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 23, pages 1-12.
    3. C. Jadeau & E. Jousselin & S. Roux & G. Verdugo, 2015. "The behaviour of French Firms during the Crisis: Evidence from the Wage Dynamics Network Survey," Working papers 574, Banque de France.
    4. Toke Aidt & Zafiris Tzannatos, 2002. "Unions and Collective Bargaining : Economic Effects in a Global Environment," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15241, March.
    5. repec:adr:anecst:y:1991:i:23:p:01 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Antonia López-Villavicencio & Sophie Saglio, 2017. "The Wage Inflation-Unemployment Curve at the Macroeconomic Level," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 79(1), pages 55-78, February.
    7. repec:adr:anecst:y:1991:i:23 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Jimeno, Juan F. & Thomas, Carlos, 2013. "Collective bargaining, firm heterogeneity and unemployment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 63-79.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers


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