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Unionisation structures, productivity and firm performance: New insights from a heterogeneous firm model

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  • Braun, Sebastian

Abstract

This paper introduces collective bargaining at the firm and at the sector level into the heterogeneous firm model of Melitz and Ottaviano (Melitz, M. J., Ottaviano, G. I. P., 2008. Market size, trade, and productivity. Review of Economic Studies 75 (1), 295-316). It then analyses how the two bargaining regimes change aggregate industry productivity and firm performance relative to a competitive labour market. While sector-level bargaining forces the least productive firms to exit and thus increases average productivity relative to the competitive benchmark, firm-level bargaining allows less productive firms to stay in the market and thus reduces average productivity. Sector-level bargaining also results in higher average output and profit levels than either firm-level bargaining or a competitive labour market. The paper also shows that the choice between sector- and firm-level bargaining can involve a trade-off between product variety and product prices: Not only the average price level but also product variety tends to be lower under sector-level bargaining than under firm-level bargaining.

Suggested Citation

  • Braun, Sebastian, 2011. "Unionisation structures, productivity and firm performance: New insights from a heterogeneous firm model," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 120-129, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:18:y:2011:i:1:p:120-129
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Florian Baumann & Tobias Brändle, 2015. "We Want them all Covered! Collective Bargaining and Firm Heterogeneity. Theory and Evidence from Germany," IAW Discussion Papers 114, Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung (IAW).
    2. May, Frank Christian & Münster, Johannes, 2013. "Centralized Bargaining in Press Wholesale," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79984, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    3. Marco Pinto & Jochen Michaelis, 2014. "International Trade and Unemployment—the Worker-selection Effect," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(2), pages 226-252, May.
    4. Brändle, Tobias & Baumann, Florian, 2013. "Union Bargaining and Intra-Industry Productivity Differentials: Theory and Evidence from Germany," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79852, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    5. Marco de Pinto & Jochen Michaelis, 2017. "Firm Selection and the Role of Union Heterogeneity," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201743, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    6. Ronald Bachmann & Thomas K. Bauer & Hanna Frings, 2014. "Minimum Wages as a Barrier to Entry: Evidence from Germany," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 28(3), pages 338-357, September.
    7. Marco Pinto, 2016. "Redistribution of Trade Gains in the Presence of Firm and Worker Heterogeneity," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(9), pages 1360-1383, September.
    8. Marco de Pinto, 2015. "Firm-level versus Sector-level Trade Unions – The Role of Rent-Sharing Motives," IAAEU Discussion Papers 201508, Institute of Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the European Union (IAAEU).
    9. Ronald Bachmann & Thomas K. Bauer & Hanna Kröger, 2012. "Minimum Wages as a Barrier to Entry – Evidence from Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 0329, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    10. repec:zbw:rwirep:0329 is not listed on IDEAS

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