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Can the Scala Mobile Explain the Fall and Rise of Earnings Inequality in Italy? A Semiparametric Analysis, 19771993

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  • Marco Manacorda

    (Queen Mary University of London and London School of Economics)

Abstract

This article uses Survey of Households' Income and Wealth microdata to investigate the role the Scala Mobile played in the initial fall and subsequent rise in earnings inequality in Italy between 1977 and 1993. The Scala Mobile was a wage indexation mechanism granting the same absolute wage increase to all employees as prices rose, thereby potentially compressing wage differentials. Over time, the potential equalizing effect of this mechanism fell. This article argues that the rise in inequality from the mid-1980s was a response to the compression of differentials operated over the previous years by the Scala Mobile.

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Manacorda, 2004. "Can the Scala Mobile Explain the Fall and Rise of Earnings Inequality in Italy? A Semiparametric Analysis, 19771993," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(3), pages 585-614, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:v:22:y:2004:i:3:p:585-614
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. DiNardo, John & Fortin, Nicole M & Lemieux, Thomas, 1996. "Labor Market Institutions and the Distribution of Wages, 1973-1992: A Semiparametric Approach," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1001-1044, September.
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    5. Katz, Lawrence F. & Autor, David H., 1999. "Changes in the wage structure and earnings inequality," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 26, pages 1463-1555 Elsevier.
    6. Richard B. Freeman & Lawrence F. Katz, 1995. "Differences and Changes in Wage Structures," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number free95-1, January.
    7. 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.
    8. Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence M, 1996. "International Differences in Male Wage Inequality: Institutions versus Market Forces," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 791-836, August.
    9. David Card, 1983. "Cost-of-Living Escalators in Major Union Contracts," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 37(1), pages 34-48, October.
    10. Bound, John & Johnson, George, 1992. "Changes in the Structure of Wages in the 1980's: An Evaluation of Alternative Explanations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 371-392, June.
    11. Freeman, Richard B. & Katz, Lawrence F. (ed.), 1995. "Differences and Changes in Wage Structures," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226261607, June.
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