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Asymmetric employer information, promotions, and the wage policy of firms

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  • Dato, Simon
  • Grunewald, Andreas
  • Kräkel, Matthias
  • Müller, Daniel

Abstract

This paper provides evidence that inefficient promotion strategies and large wage increases upon promotion may both arise as a consequence of asymmetric employer information. Building on the seminal work by Waldman (1984a) and Milgrom and Oster (1987), we first present a model that illustrates how both phenomena may jointly arise due to the information revealing character of promotions. Using experimental labor markets, we find evidence consistent with asymmetric employer information being a causal factor for both inefficient promotions and large wage increases upon promotion. Furthermore, we analyze the effect of asymmetric employer information on profits and turnover.

Suggested Citation

  • Dato, Simon & Grunewald, Andreas & Kräkel, Matthias & Müller, Daniel, 2016. "Asymmetric employer information, promotions, and the wage policy of firms," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 273-300.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:100:y:2016:i:c:p:273-300
    DOI: 10.1016/j.geb.2016.09.013
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    Cited by:

    1. Dickmanns, Lisa & Gürtler, Marc & Gürtler, Oliver, 2018. "Market-based tournaments: An experimental investigation," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 294-306.
    2. Simon Dato & Andreas Grunewald & Matthias Kräkel, 2021. "Worker visibility and firms' retention policies," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 168-202, February.
    3. Chen Cohen & Ori Zax, 2022. "Human capital acquisition as a signaling device in promotion competition," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 73(2), pages 550-566, May.
    4. Jed DeVaro & Oliver Gürtler, 2020. "Strategic shirking in competitive labor markets: A general model of multi‐task promotion tournaments with employer learning," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(2), pages 335-376, April.
    5. David Wettstein & Ori Zax, 2018. "Promotion Policies of Workers who Observe their Ability," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 38(4), pages 2509-2514.
    6. Deutscher, Christian & Gürtler, Marc & Gürtler, Oliver & DeVaro, Jed, 2020. "Firm choice and career success - theory and evidence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 127(C).
    7. Ori Zax, 2017. "Promotion Policies at Different Firms," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 37(2), pages 1045-1054.
    8. Ori Zax, 2020. "Human capital acquisition as a competitive response to the promotion distortion," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(3), pages 496-509, July.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Invisibility hypothesis; Poaching; Promotion-as-signal hypothesis;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
    • M5 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics

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