IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/moneco/v56y2009i1p109-133.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Turbulent firms, turbulent wages?

Author

Listed:
  • Comin, Diego
  • Groshen, Erica L.
  • Rabin, Bess

Abstract

Has greater turbulence among firms fueled rising wage instability in the U.S.? We find strong support for the hypothesis that rising turbulence in the sales of large publicly-traded U.S. firms over the past three decades has raised their workers' high-frequency wage volatility. Through controls and instrumental variable probes, we rule out straightforward compositional churning as an explanation for the link between firm sales and wage volatility. We also observe that the relationship between sales and wage volatility at the firm level is stronger since 1980, is present only in large companies and is stronger in services than in manufacturing companies.

Suggested Citation

  • Comin, Diego & Groshen, Erica L. & Rabin, Bess, 2009. "Turbulent firms, turbulent wages?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 109-133, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:56:y:2009:i:1:p:109-133
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304-3932(08)00160-8
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1994. "Monetary Policy, Business Cycles, and the Behavior of Small Manufacturing Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 309-340.
    2. Steven J. Davis & John Haltiwanger & Ron Jarmin & Javier Miranda, 2007. "Volatility and Dispersion in Business Growth Rates: Publicly Traded versus Privately Held Firms," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2006, Volume 21, pages 107-180 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Comin, Diego & Mulani, Sunil, 2009. "A theory of growth and volatility at the aggregate and firm level," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1023-1042, November.
    4. Gueorgui Kambourov & Iourii Manovskii, 2000. "Occupational Mobility and Wage Inequality, Second Version," PIER Working Paper Archive 04-026, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 15 Jun 2004.
    5. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2005. "Rising Wage Inequality: The Role of Composition and Prices," NBER Working Papers 11628, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Diego A. Comin & Thomas Philippon, 2006. "The Rise in Firm-Level Volatility: Causes and Consequences," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2005, Volume 20, pages 167-228 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Diego Comin & Sunil Mulani, 2006. "Diverging Trends in Aggregate and Firm Volatility," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(2), pages 374-383, May.
    8. Richard B. Freeman, 2007. "Labor Market Institutions Around the World," NBER Working Papers 13242, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Kremer, M & Maskin, E, 1996. "Wage Inequality and Segregation by Skill," Working papers 96-23, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    10. Abowd, John M. & Kramarz, Francis & Margolis, David N. & Troske, Kenneth R., 2001. "The Relative Importance of Employer and Employee Effects on Compensation: A Comparison of France and the United States," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 419-436, December.
    11. Bengt Holmstrom, 1982. "Moral Hazard in Teams," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(2), pages 324-340, Autumn.
    12. Levy, Frank & Murnane, Richard J, 1992. "U.S. Earnings Levels and Earnings Inequality: A Review of Recent Trends and Proposed Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1333-1381, September.
    13. Erica L. Groshen, 1988. "Why do wages vary among employers?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q I, pages 19-38.
    14. Currie, Janet & McConnell, Sheena, 1992. "Firm-Specific Determinants of the Real Wage," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(2), pages 297-304, May.
    15. David I. Levine & Dale Belman & Gary Charness & Erica L. Groshen & K.C. O'Shaughnessy, 2002. "How New is the "New Employment Contract"? Evidence from North American Pay Practices," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number nec, November.
    16. Gueorgui Kambourov & Iourii Manovskii, 2009. "Occupational Mobility and Wage Inequality," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(2), pages 731-759.
    17. Giovanni L. Violante, 2002. "Technological Acceleration, Skill Transferability, and the Rise in Residual Inequality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(1), pages 297-338.
    18. Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-442, June.
    19. Diego Comin & Sunil Mulani, 2003. "Diverging Trends in Macro and Micro Volatility: Facts," Macroeconomics 0306008, EconWPA.
    20. Robert A. Moffitt & Peter Gottschalk, 2002. "Trends in the Transitory Variance of Earnings in the United States," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(478), pages 68-73, March.
    21. Erica L. Groshen, 1996. "American Employer Salary Surveys and Labor Economics Reseach: Issues and Contributions," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 41-42, pages 413-442.
    22. John A. Abowd & Thomas Lemieux, 1993. "The Effects of Product Market Competition on Collective Bargaining Agreements: The Case of Foreign Competition in Canada," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(4), pages 983-1014.
    23. Joanne Salop & Steven Salop, 1976. "Self-Selection and Turnover in the Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 90(4), pages 619-627.
    24. Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 1994. "The Growth of Earnings Instability in the U.S. Labor Market," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(2), pages 217-272.
    25. Michael Kremer & Eric Maskin, 1996. "Wage Inequality and Segregation," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1777, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    26. Erica L. Groshen, 1991. "Sources of Intra-Industry Wage Dispersion: How Much Do Employers Matter?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(3), pages 869-884.
    27. Joanne Salop & Steven C. Salop, 1976. "Self-selection and turnover in the labor market," Special Studies Papers 80, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Riphahn, Regina T. & Schnitzlein, Daniel D., 2016. "Wage mobility in East and West Germany," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 11-34.
    2. Daniel Sandoval & Mark Rank & Thomas Hirschl, 2009. "The increasing risk of poverty across the American life course," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 46(4), pages 717-737, November.
    3. Devonald, L. & Higson, C. & Holly, S., 2017. "Aggregate and Firm level volatility: the role of acquisitions and disposals," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1748, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    4. García-Vega, María & Guariglia, Alessandra & Spaliara, Marina-Eliza, 2012. "Volatility, financial constraints, and trade," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 57-76.
    5. Chamon, Marcos & Liu, Kai & Prasad, Eswar, 2013. "Income uncertainty and household savings in China," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 164-177.
    6. repec:taf:applec:v:49:y:2017:i:43:p:4299-4309 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Anna Batyra, 2007. "Are turbulences of Sargent and Ljungqvist consistent with lower aggregate volatility?," 2007 Meeting Papers 413, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    8. Ronald Leung & Marco Stampini & Desire Vencatachellum, 2014. "Does Human Capital Protect Workers against Exogenous Shocks? Evidence from Panel Data on South Africa during the 2008-2009 Crisis," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 82(1), pages 99-116, March.
    9. HIGUCHI Yoshio & KIYOTA Kozo & MATSUURA Toshiyuki, 2016. "Multinationals, Intrafirm Trade, and Employment Volatility," Discussion papers 16087, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    10. Erling Barth & Alex Bryson & James C. Davis & Richard Freeman, 2016. "It's Where You Work: Increases in the Dispersion of Earnings across Establishments and Individuals in the United States," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 34(S2), pages 67-97.
    11. Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 2009. "The Rising Instability of U.S. Earnings," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(4), pages 3-24, Fall.
    12. Stephen Jenkins & Peter Lambert, 2011. "Robert Moffitt and Peter Gottschalk’s 1995 paper ‘Trends in the covariance structure of earnings in the US: 1969–1987’," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 9(3), pages 433-437, September.
    13. Paula Garda & Volker Ziemann, 2014. "Economic Policies and Microeconomic Stability: A Literature Review and Some Empirics," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1115, OECD Publishing.
    14. repec:ucp:jlabec:doi:10.1086/694167 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Buch, Claudia M. & Döpke, Jörg & Stahn, Kerstin, 2008. "Great moderation at the firm level? Unconditional versus conditional output volatility," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2008,13, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    16. Claudia M. Buch, 2013. "Has Labor Income Become More Volatile? Evidence from International Industry-Level Data," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 14(4), pages 399-431, November.
    17. Shane T. Jensen & Stephen H. Shore, 2008. "Changes in the Distribution of Income Volatility," Papers 0808.1090, arXiv.org.
    18. Stephen Shore, 2015. "The co-movement of couples’ incomes," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 569-588, September.
    19. Louis Chauvel & Anne Hartung & Flaviana Palmisano, 2017. "Dynamics of Income Rank Volatility: Evidence from Germany and the US," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 926, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    20. repec:bla:ecinqu:v:55:y:2017:i:1:p:260-280 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Claudia M. Buch & Christian Pierdzioch, 2009. "Low Skill but High Volatility?," CESifo Working Paper Series 2665, CESifo Group Munich.
    22. repec:prg:jnlpol:v:2017:y:2017:i:4:id:1152:p:410-423 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Boris Cournède & Paula Garda & Volker Ziemann, 2015. "Effects of Economic Policies on Microeconomic Stability," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1201, OECD Publishing.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Transitory wage volatility Firm volatility PSID Turbulence COMPUSTAT;

    JEL classification:

    • J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
    • J5 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:56:y:2009:i:1:p:109-133. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505566 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.