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Wage flexibility in the new European Union members: How different from the old?

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  • VAN POECK, André
  • VEINER, Maret

Abstract

In this paper we provide new evidence on aggregate labour market flexibility in the four largest new EU member states from Central Europe (CEEC4) and a benchmark of existing EU countries (EU9). This is done trough direct comparison of several labour market institutions from which we derive an institutional summary indicator. Another approach that we follow is the estimation of aggregate wage Phillips curves from which we obtain estimates for the wage responsiveness to unemployment in these countries. The results show that the CEEC4 cannot be regarded as an homogeneous group. The Czech Republic and Hungary are relatively flexible and comparable to the United Kingdom. Poland belongs to a subgroup with France, Germany and Italy, with reduced labour market flexibility. The results are especially problematic for the Slovak Republic where aggregate wages do not respond to unemployment, although labour market institutions are still more supportive to flexibility than in most incumbent EU countries.

Suggested Citation

  • VAN POECK, André & VEINER, Maret, 2007. "Wage flexibility in the new European Union members: How different from the old?," Working Papers 2007016, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ant:wpaper:2007016
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ian Babetskii, 2006. "Aggregate Wage Flexibility in Selected New EU Member States," Working Papers 2006/1, Czech National Bank, Research Department.
    2. Friedrich Schneider & Christopher Bajada, 2003. "The Size and Development of the Shadow Economies in the Asia-Pacific," Economics working papers 2003-01, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
    3. Blanchard, Olivier & Wolfers, Justin, 2000. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages 1-33, March.
    4. Shintaro Yamaguchi, 2008. "Wage Flexibility in Turbulent Times: A Practitioner's Guide, with an Application to Poland," Eastern European Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(2), pages 88-114, March.
    5. Blanchflower, David G., 2001. "Unemployment, Well-Being, and Wage Curves in Eastern and Central Europe," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 364-402, December.
    6. Nicola Brandt & Jean-Marc Burniaux & Romain Duval, 2005. "Assessing the OECD Jobs Strategy: Past Developments and Reforms," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 429, OECD Publishing.
    7. Lawrence F. Katz & Olivier Blanchard, 1999. "Wage Dynamics: Reconciling Theory and Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 69-74, May.
    8. Huitfeldt, H., 2001. "Unemployment, Labour Market Programmes and Wage Determination: Evidence from the Czech and Slovak Republics," Papers 2001:01, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
    9. Huitfeldt, Henrik, 2001. "Unemployment, Labour Market Programmes and Wage Determination: Evidence from the Czech and Slovak Republics," Working Paper Series 2001:1, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
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    Cited by:

    1. Vakulenko, E. & Gurvich, E., 2016. "Real Wage Flexibility in Russia: Comparative Analysis," Journal of the New Economic Association, New Economic Association, vol. 31(3), pages 67-92.
    2. Rusinova, Desislava & Lipatov, Vilen & Heinz, Frigyes Ferdinand, 2015. "How flexible are real wages in EU countries? A panel investigation," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 140-154.

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