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Employment and wage behaviour of industrial enterprises in transition economies: The cases of Poland and Czechoslovakia

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  • Swati Basu
  • Saul Estrin
  • Jan Svejnar

Abstract

In this paper we use two very large panel datasets from Poland, 1988-90 and Czechoslovakia, 1990-1992 to explore the dynamics of employment and wage determination at the enterprise level in the early years of transition. The study is intended to assist in building a coherent picture of microeconomic adjustment in transition, a field which was not sufficiently explored in the early years of reform. We find that Polish firms were already to some extent responsive to market conditions pre-reform, notably to demand in determining employment. Czechoslovak firms, however, were largely unresponsive to such pressures in 1989-90. The elasticities rose significantly in both countries in the early years of reform, especially in Czechoslovakia which quickly attained initial Polish patterns of adjustment. Firms became much more responsive to sales and cost pressures in adjusting employment and to their own productivity in setting pay. Ownership effects in these early years were, however, much more modest, with state-owned firms adjusting employment more than their private counterparts, perhaps because over-manning was more serious in that sector. Copyright The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, 1997.

Suggested Citation

  • Swati Basu & Saul Estrin & Jan Svejnar, 1997. "Employment and wage behaviour of industrial enterprises in transition economies: The cases of Poland and Czechoslovakia," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 5(2), pages 271-287, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:etrans:v:5:y:1997:i:2:p:271-287
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    Cited by:

    1. Polterovich, Victor, 2000. "Employment- wage decisions in the insider-owned firm," BOFIT Discussion Papers 1/2000, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
    2. Jan Babecky & Kamil Galuscak & Lubomir Lizal, 2011. "Firm-Level Labour Demand: Adjustment in Good Times and During the Crisis," Working Papers 2011/15, Czech National Bank, Research Department.
    3. Rumen Dobrinsky, 2004. "Small Private Sector in Bulgaria: Labour Market Impact and “Grey Zone” Activity," wiiw Balkan Observatory Working Papers 37, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
    4. Fiona Duffy & Patrick Paul Walsh, 2000. "Individual Pay and Outside Options: Evidence from the Polish Labour Force Survey," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 364, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    5. Jan Svejnar, 2006. "Strategies for growth : Central and Eastern Europe," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 205-233.
    6. Jaan Masso & Raul Eamets & Kaia Philips, 2004. "Job creation and job destruction in Estonia: labour reallocation and structural changes," UCL SSEES Economics and Business working paper series 39, UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES).
    7. Hartmut Lehmann & Kaia Phillips & Jonathan Wadsworth, 2002. "The Incidence and Cost of Job Loss in a Transition Economy: Displaced Workers in Estonia, 1989-1999," CERT Discussion Papers 0209, Centre for Economic Reform and Transformation, Heriot Watt University.
    8. Jan Svejnar, 2002. "Transition Economies: Performance and Challenges," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(1), pages 3-28, Winter.
    9. Jozef Konings & Olga Kupets & Hartmut Lehmann, 2002. "Gross Job Flows in Ukraine: Size, Ownership and Trade Effects," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 521, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    10. Jan Svejnar, 2002. "Labor Market Flexibility in Central and East Europe," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 496, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    11. repec:eee:labchp:v:3:y:1999:i:pb:p:2809-2857 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Alain de Crombrugghe & Gregory de Walque, 2011. "Wage and employment effects of a wage norm : The Polish transition experience," Working Paper Research 209, National Bank of Belgium.
    13. Stefan Bojnec, 2003. "Wage formation during economic transformation: macroeconomic facts and firm survey evidence from Slovenia," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(4), pages 571-593.
    14. Faggio, Giulia & Konings, Jozef, 2003. "Job creation, job destruction and employment growth in transition countries in the 90s," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 129-154, June.
    15. Vladislav Flek & Jiri Vecernik, 1998. "Employment and Wage Structures in the Czech Republic," Archive of Monetary Policy Division Working Papers 1998/03, Czech National Bank.
    16. Charemza, Wojciech & Makarova , Svetlana & Kharin, Yuriy & Malugin, Vladimir & Huryn , Aliaksandr & Raskina, Julia, 2006. "On Building Economic Development Patterns for Russia and Belorussia on the Basis of LAM-3 Econometric Model," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 2(2), pages 124-139.
    17. Faggio, Giulia & Konings, Jozef, 1999. "Gross Job Flows and Firm Growth in Transition Countries: Evidence Using Firm Level Data on Five Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 2261, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Grosfeld, Irena & Nivet, Jean-Francois, 1999. "Insider power and wage setting in transition: Evidence from a panel of large Polish firms, 1988-1994," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 1137-1147, April.
    19. Svejnar, Jan, 1999. "Labor markets in the transitional Central and East European economies," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 42, pages 2809-2857 Elsevier.
    20. Jaan Masso & Raul Eamets & Kaia Philips, 2004. "Where Have All The Jobs Gone? Gross Job Flows In Estonia," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Working Paper Series 28, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).
    21. Dobbelaere, Sabien, 2004. "Ownership, firm size and rent sharing in Bulgaria," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 165-189, April.

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