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Monopsony Power, Pay Structure, and Training

  • Samuel Muehlemann
  • Paul Ryan
  • Stefan C. Wolter

Although interest in monopsonistic influences on labor market outcomes has revived in recent years, only a few empirical studies provide direct evidence on this topic. In this article, the authors analyze the effect of monopsony power on pay structure, using a direct measure of labor market thinness. The authors find evidence of monopsony power, as firms facing fewer local competitors offer lower wages to skilled labor and trainees, but not to unskilled labor. The findings have important implications for the economic theory of training, as most recent models assume monopsonistic pay-setting for skilled labor, but not for trainees.

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Article provided by ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School in its journal ILR Review.

Volume (Year): 66 (2013)
Issue (Month): 5 (October)
Pages: 1097-1114

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Handle: RePEc:ilr:articl:v:66:y:2013:i:5:p:1097-1114
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  1. Alan Manning, 2001. "A generalised model of monopsony," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20115, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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  12. John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 1999. "Do Workers Pay for On-The-Job Training?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(2), pages 235-252.
  13. Bhaskar, V & To, Ted, 1999. "Minimum Wages for Ronald McDonald Monopsonies: A Theory of Monopsonistic Competition," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(455), pages 190-203, April.
  14. Michael R Ransom & David P. Sims, 2010. "Estimating the Firm's Labor Supply Curve in a "New Monopsony" Framework: Schoolteachers in Missouri," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(2), pages 331-355, 04.
  15. Jan K. Brueckner & Jacques-FranÁois Thisse & Yves Zenou, 2002. "Local Labor Markets, Job Matching, and Urban Location," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(1), pages 155-171, February.
  16. Orley C. Ashenfelter & Henry Farber & Michael R. Ransom, 2010. "Modern Models of Monopsony in Labor Markets: A Brief Survey," Working Papers 1223, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  17. Chang, Chun & Wang, Yijiang, 1996. "Human Capital Investment under Asymmetric Information: The Pigovian Conjecture Revisited," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(3), pages 505-19, July.
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  22. Burdett, Kenneth & Mortensen, Dale T, 1998. "Wage Differentials, Employer Size, and Unemployment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(2), pages 257-73, May.
  23. Daron Acemoglu & Jorn-Steffen Pischke, 1998. "Beyond Becker: Training in Imperfect Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 6740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  27. Regina Dionisius & Samuel Muehlemann & Harald Pfeifer & Günter Walden & Felix Wenzelmann & Stefan C. Wolter, 2008. "Cost and Benefit of Apprenticeship Training – A Comparison of Germany and Switzerland," CESifo Working Paper Series 2287, CESifo Group Munich.
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