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Worker churning and firms' wage policies

Author

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  • Pedro S. Martins

Abstract

Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to provide empirical evidence of a causal nature about the relationship between wages and churning (“excessive” worker turnover). Design/methodology/approach - Matched employer-employee panel data from Portugal, covering the period 1986-2000 are used in the study. Econometric methods are also used, including random effects tobit models, fixed effects and instrumental variables. Findings - Unlike in previous research (which typically does not consider causal relationships), the paper presents evidence that wages do not necessarily decrease the amount of churning. If employers are forced to increase pay, they may respond by hiring different workers. Detailed evidence about the nature of job and worker flows and churning levels across industries is presented. Research limitations/implications - Future research should examine the paths of workers whose wages are affected by collective bargaining. Practical implications - The paper provides additional evidence that effort may not be particularly sensitive to wages in some industries/occupations. The should be a better understanding of role of wages in personnel policies. Originality/value - This paper is probably the first that seeks to examine the causal relationship between wages and churning. The results will be of interest to labour economists and human resource management experts.

Suggested Citation

  • Pedro S. Martins, 2008. "Worker churning and firms' wage policies," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 29(1), pages 48-63, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:29:y:2008:i:1:p:48-63
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lane, Julia & Stevens, David & Burgess, Simon, 1996. "Worker and job flows," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 109-113, April.
    2. Burgess, Simon & Lane, Julia & Stevens, David, 2000. "Job Flows, Worker Flows, and Churning," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(3), pages 473-502, July.
    3. Oriana Bandiera & Iwan Barankay & Imran Rasul, 2005. "Social Preferences and the Response to Incentives: Evidence from Personnel Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 917-962.
    4. David E. Guest & Jonathan Michie & Neil Conway & Maura Sheehan, 2003. "Human Resource Management and Corporate Performance in the UK," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 41(2), pages 291-314, June.
    5. Pedro Portugal & Olivier Blanchard, 2001. "What Hides Behind an Unemployment Rate: Comparing Portuguese and U.S. Labor Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 187-207.
    6. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, January.
    7. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Wolter H. J. Hassink & Jan C. Van Ours, 1996. "Job Turnover and Labor Turnover: A taxinomy of Employment Dynamics," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, pages 21-40.
    8. John M. Abowd & Patrick Corbel & Francis Kramarz, 1999. "The Entry And Exit Of Workers And The Growth Of Employment: An Analysis Of French Establishments," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, pages 170-187.
    9. Burgess, Simon & Lane, Julia & Stevens, David, 2001. "Churning dynamics: an analysis of hires and separations at the employer level," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 1-14, January.
    10. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Wolter H. J. Hassink & Jan C. Van Ours, 1996. "Job Turnover and Labor Turnover: A taxinomy of Employment Dynamics," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, pages 21-40.
    11. Pekka Ilmakunnas & Mika Maliranta, 2005. "Worker inflow, outflow, and churning," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(10), pages 1115-1133.
    12. Ana Rute Cardoso & Pedro Portugal, 2005. "Contractual Wages and the Wage Cushion under Different Bargaining Settings," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(4), pages 875-902, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00593952 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Pedro S. Martins, 2014. "30,000 Minimum Wages: The Economic Effects of Collective Bargaining Extensions," FEUNL Working Paper Series wp589, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Economia.
    3. Richard Duhautois & Fabrice Gilles & Héloïse Petit, 2012. "Worker flows and establishment wage differentials : a breakdown of the relationship," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00833872, HAL.
    4. Pedro S. Martins, 2014. "30,000 Minimum Wages: The Economic Effects of Collective Bargaining Extensions," FEUNL Working Paper Series wp589, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Economia.
    5. Pedro S. Martins, 2014. "30,000 minimum wages: The economic effects of collective agreement extensions," Working Papers 51, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Business and Management, Centre for Globalisation Research.
    6. Miguel Ferreira & José Tavares & Luís Catela Nunes, 2016. "Animal Spirits vs Contagion: Which one is the main driver of sovereign yields in Europe?," EcoMod2016 9617, EcoMod.
    7. Pedro S. Martins, 2016. "Can overtime premium flexibility promote employment? Firm-and worker-level evidence from a labour law reform," FEUNL Working Paper Series wp607, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Economia.
    8. Pedro S. Martins, 2016. "Should the maximum duration of fixed-term contracts increase in recessions? Evidence from a law reform," FEUNL Working Paper Series wp606, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Economia.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Employee turnover; Pay policies; Portugal;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J50 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - General
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • M50 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - General

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