IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

"Unwarranted" Wage Changes and the Return on Capital

  • Margarita Katsimi
  • Sarantis Kalyvitis
  • Thomas Moutos

Casual empiricism suggests that “unwarranted” wage changes, defined as the part of wage growth that is not explained by changes in labour productivity, are negatively associated with the return on capital. The main point of this paper is to show that “unwarranted” wage changes have no causal effect on capital return. To this end, we show that standard theoretical models, in which “unwarranted” wages changes and the return on capital are endogenously determined, do not necessarily predict a negative association between them. We then estimate aggregate net return on capital equations using panel data for 19 OECD countries for the period 1970-2000 in which we account for the endogeneity of “unwarranted” wage changes by exploiting variations in institutional and labour market characteristics. We find that “unwarranted” wage changes do not affect the return on capital. This result remains robust to alternative empirical specifications and to alternative definitions of profitability and “unwarranted” wage changes. An implication of our findings is that standard calls for reforms aiming at wage moderation following the appearance of “unwarranted” wage changes are not always justified.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2009/wp-cesifo-2009-09/cesifo1_wp2804.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2804.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2804
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Poschingerstrasse 5, 81679 Munich

Phone: +49 (89) 9224-0
Fax: +49 (89) 985369
Web page: http://www.cesifo-group.de
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Alesina, Alberto F & Ardagna, Silvia & Perotti, Roberto & Schiantarelli, Fabio, 1999. "Fiscal Policy, Profits and Investment," CEPR Discussion Papers 2250, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Jim Malley & Thomas Moutos, 2004. "Do excessive wage increases raise imports? Theory and evidence," Macroeconomics 0401003, EconWPA.
  3. Anita M. McGahan & Michael E. Porter, 2002. "What Do We Know About Variance in Accounting Profitability?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(7), pages 834-851, July.
  4. Bernanke, Ben S, 1986. "Employment, Hours, and Earnings in the Depression: An Analysis of EightManufacturing Industries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 82-109, March.
  5. Olivier Blanchard & Francesco Giavazzi, 2001. "Macroeconomic Effects of Regulation and Deregulation in Goods and Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 8120, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Darby, Julia & Hart, Robert A., 2002. "Wages, Productivity, and Work Intensity in the Great Depression," IZA Discussion Papers 543, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Kiminori Matsuyama, 2000. "The rise of mass consumption societies," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6656, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  8. Ricardo J. Caballero & Mohamad L. Hammour, 1997. "Jobless Growth: Appropriability, Factor Substitution, and Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 6221, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Glen, Jack & Lee, Kevin & Singh, Ajit, 2001. "Persistence of profitability and competition in emerging markets," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 247-253, August.
  10. Baker, Dean. & Glyn, Andrew. & Howell, David. & Schmitt, John., 2004. "Unemployment and labour market institutions : the failure of the empirical case for deregulation," ILO Working Papers 993741243402676, International Labour Organization.
  11. Kevin M. Murphy & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1988. "Industrialization and the Big Push," NBER Working Papers 2708, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. McDonald, Ian M & Solow, Robert M, 1981. "Wage Bargaining and Employment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 896-908, December.
  13. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2000. "International Data on Educational Attainment Updates and Implications," NBER Working Papers 7911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald & Peter Sanfey, 1996. "Wages, Profits, and Rent-Sharing," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(1), pages 227-251.
  15. Lazear, Edward P, 1979. "Why Is There Mandatory Retirement?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1261-84, December.
  16. Michael Bruno, 1984. "Raw Materials, Profits, and the Productivity Slowdown," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 99(1), pages 1-29.
  17. Blanchflower, David G & Oswald, Andrew J, 1990. " The Wage Curve," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 92(2), pages 215-35.
    • David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald, 1995. "The Wage Curve," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026202375x, March.
  18. David Card & John E. DiNardo, 2002. "Skill-Biased Technological Change and Rising Wage Inequality: Some Problems and Puzzles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(4), pages 733-783, October.
  19. Bean, Charles R, 1994. "European Unemployment: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(2), pages 573-619, June.
  20. Martin S. Feldstein, 2008. "Did Wages Reflect Growth in Productivity?," NBER Working Papers 13953, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Blau, Francine D. & Kahn, Lawrence M., 1999. "Institutions and laws in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 25, pages 1399-1461 Elsevier.
  22. Louis N. Christofides & Andrew J. Oswald, 1992. "Real Wage Determination and Rent-Sharing in Collective Bargaining Agreements," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(3), pages 985-1002.
  23. Hellerstein, Judith K & Neumark, David & Troske, Kenneth R, 1999. "Wages, Productivity, and Worker Characteristics: Evidence from Plant-Level Production Functions and Wage Equations," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(3), pages 409-46, July.
  24. Mumford, Karen & Dowrick, Steve, 1994. "Wage Bargaining with Endogenous Profits, Overtime Working and Heterogeneous Labor," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(2), pages 329-36, May.
  25. Oliver J. Blanchard, 1997. "The Medium Run," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(2), pages 89-158.
  26. Card, David, 1996. "The Effect of Unions on the Structure of Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 957-79, July.
  27. Caballero, R-J & Hammour, M-L, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Specificity," Working papers 96-25, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  28. Goddard, J. A. & Wilson, J. O. S., 1999. "The persistence of profit: a new empirical interpretation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 663-687, July.
  29. Azariadis, Costas, 1975. "Implicit Contracts and Underemployment Equilibria," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(6), pages 1183-1202, December.
  30. Dani Rodrik, 1999. "Democracies Pay Higher Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 707-738.
  31. Feldstein, Martin, 2008. "Did Wages Reflect Growth in Productivity?," Scholarly Articles 2794832, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  32. Martin Neil Baily, 1974. "Wages and Employment under Uncertain Demand," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(1), pages 37-50.
  33. Frank, Robert H, 1984. "Are Workers Paid Their Marginal Products?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(4), pages 549-71, September.
  34. Bottazzi, Laura & Pesenti, Paolo & van Wincoop, Eric, 1996. "Wages, profits and the international portfolio puzzle," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 219-254, February.
  35. Stephen Nickell & Luca Nunziata & Wolfgang Ochel, 2005. "Unemployment in the OECD Since the 1960s. What Do We Know?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 1-27, 01.
  36. repec:ilo:ilowps:374124 is not listed on IDEAS
  37. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
  38. repec:hrv:faseco:3353756 is not listed on IDEAS
  39. Jeffrey D. Sachs, 1979. "Wages, Profits, and Macroeconomic Adjustment: A Comparative Study," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 10(2), pages 269-332.
  40. Geroski, Paul A & Jacquemin, Alexis, 1988. "The Persistence of Profits: A European Comparison," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 98(391), pages 375-89, June.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2804. 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: (Klaus Wohlrabe)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.