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Intra-Firm Wage Dispersion and Firm Performance

  • Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf
  • Zweimuller, Josef

Personnel economics has put forward conflicting arguments concerning the impact of increased wage dispersion within a firm on the productivity of its workers. Besides giving more incentives, bigger wage differentials might also give rise to less co-operation and more politicking amongst workers resulting in worse outcomes. We try to shed light on these issues using panel data for Austrian firms. As indicators for firm performance we use standardised wages. For white-collar wages the following picture emerges: more dispersion leads to higher earnings up to some point where the relation changes its direction. For blue-collar wages we find a positive association between dispersion and standardised wages between firms, but no relation within firms over time. Copyright 1999 by WWZ and Helbing & Lichtenhahn Verlag AG

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Kyklos.

Volume (Year): 52 (1999)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 555-72

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Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:52:y:1999:i:4:p:555-72
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  1. Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 1992. "Endogenous Growth, Human Capital, and Industry Wages," CEPR Discussion Papers 714, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Agell, Jonas & Lundborg, Per, 1995. " Theories of Pay and Unemployment: Survey Evidence from Swedish Manufacturing Firms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 97(2), pages 295-307, June.
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  10. Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf & Zweimuller, Josef, 1996. "Immigration and the Earnings of Young Native Workers," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(3), pages 473-91, July.
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  18. Steven J. Davis & John Haltiwanger, 1995. "Employer Size and The Wage Structure in U.S. Manufacturing," NBER Working Papers 5393, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Hibbs Jr., Douglas A. & Locking, Håkan, 2000. "Wage Dispersion and Productive Efficiency: Evidence For Sweden," Working Papers in Economics 21, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
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