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Wage Hikes as Supply and Demand Shock


  • J¸rgen Jerger
  • Jochen Michaelis


Wage hikes affect production costs and hence are usually analysed as supply shocks. There is a long-standing debate, however, about demand effects of wage variations. In this paper, we bring together these two arguments in a Kaldorian model with group-specific saving rates and a production technology that allows for redistribution between workers and entrepreneurs following a wage hike. We thereby pinpoint the conditions under which (a) wage variations affect aggregate demand and (b) the positive demand effects of wage hikes may even overcompensate the negative supply effects on aggregate employment ('purchasing power argument'). We conclude by noting that, whereas demand effects are very likely to occur, the conditions under which the purchasing power argument does indeed hold are very unrealistic. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2003.

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  • J¸rgen Jerger & Jochen Michaelis, 2003. "Wage Hikes as Supply and Demand Shock," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(4), pages 434-457, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:metroe:v:54:y:2003:i:4:p:434-457

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    Cited by:

    1. Ulrich Zierahn, 2012. "The importance of spatial autocorrelation for regional employment growth in Germany," Review of Regional Research: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft, Springer;Gesellschaft für Regionalforschung (GfR), vol. 32(1), pages 19-43, March.
    2. Blien, Uwe & Suedekum, Jens & Wolf, Katja, 2006. "Local employment growth in West Germany: A dynamic panel approach," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 445-458, August.
    3. Ulrich van Suntum, "undated". "The Purchasing Power Argument – Could Rising Wages Foster Employment?," Working Papers 200126, Institute of Spatial and Housing Economics, Munster Universitary.
    4. Lorenz Blume & Stefan Voigt, 2007. "The Economic Effects of Human Rights," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 509-538, November.
    5. Jens Suedekum & Uwe Blien, 2004. "Wages and Employment Growth: Disaggregated Evidence for West Germany," ERSA conference papers ersa04p641, European Regional Science Association.
    6. van Suntum, Ulrich, 2008. "The purchasing power argument: Could rising wages foster employment?," CAWM Discussion Papers 2, University of Münster, Center of Applied Economic Research Münster (CAWM).
    7. Kosfeld, Reinhold & Eckey, Hans-Friedrich & Türck, Matthias, 2005. "New Economic Geography and Regional Price Level," Volkswirtschaftliche Diskussionsbeiträge 78, University of Kassel, Faculty of Economics and Management.
    8. Jens Suedekum & Uwe Blien & Johannes Ludsteck, 2006. "What has caused regional employment growth differences in Eastern Germany?," Review of Regional Research: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft, Springer;Gesellschaft für Regionalforschung (GfR), vol. 26(1), pages 51-73, March.
    9. Lai, Ching-chong & Chin, Chi-ting & Chang, Shu-hua, 2010. "Vertical separation versus vertical integration in a macroeconomic model with imperfect competition," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 590-602, October.
    10. Beckenbach, Frank, 2005. "Knowledge representation and search processes: A contribution to the microeconomics of invention and innovation," Volkswirtschaftliche Diskussionsbeiträge 75, University of Kassel, Faculty of Economics and Management.

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