IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ctw/wpaper/12149.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Estimating the Impact of Minimum Wages on Employment, Wages and Non-wage Benefits: The Case of Agriculture in South Africa

Author

Listed:
  • Haroon Bhorat
  • Ravi Kanbur
  • Benjamin Stanwix

    () (Development Policy Research Unit
    Director and Professor)

Abstract

Assessments of the impact of minimum wages on labour market outcomes in Africa are relatively rare. In part this is because the data available do not permit adequate treatment of econometric issues that arise in such an assessment. This paper attempts to estimate the impact of the introduction of a minimum wage law within the Agriculture sector in South Africa, based on 15 waves of the biannual Labour Force Survey (LFS), starting in September 2000 and ending in September 2007. The chosen sample includes six waves before the legislations effective date (March 2003) and nine afterwards. All 15 waves are pooled and treated as repeated cross sections over time. In order to assess whether the changes experienced by farm workers are unique, we identify a control group that has similar characteristics to the treatment group. Our econometric approach involves using two alternative specifications of a difference-in-differences model. We test whether employers reduced employment, and whether they responded at the intensive margin by reducing hours of work. The law also required non-wage benefits to be implemented, and we track the response here in the form of one such provision, namely that of a written contract. The results suggest a significant reduction in employment in Agriculture from the minimum wage, an increase in wages on average, no significant change in hours worked and a sharp rise in non-wage compliance. Acknowledgements: The research, from which this paper emanates, was funded by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC).

Suggested Citation

  • Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Benjamin Stanwix, 2012. "Estimating the Impact of Minimum Wages on Employment, Wages and Non-wage Benefits: The Case of Agriculture in South Africa," Working Papers 12149, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
  • Handle: RePEc:ctw:wpaper:12149
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.dpru.uct.ac.za/sites/default/files/image_tool/images/36/DPRU%20WP12-149_0.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2012
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dinkelman, Taryn & Ranchhod, Vimal, 2012. "Evidence on the impact of minimum wage laws in an informal sector: Domestic workers in South Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 27-45.
    2. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1994. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 772-793, September.
    3. Andalón, Mabel & Pagés, Carmen, 2008. "Minimum Wages in Kenya," IZA Discussion Papers 3390, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Murray, Justin & van Walbeek, Corne, 2007. "Impact of the Sectoral Determination for Farm Workers on the South African Sugar Industry: Case Study of the KwaZulu-Natal North and South Coasts," Agrekon, Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA), vol. 46(1), March.
    5. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Natasha Mayet, 2013. "The impact of sectoral minimum wage laws on employment, wages, and hours of work in South Africa," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 2(1), pages 1-27, December.
    6. Neumark, David & Wascher, William L., 2007. "Minimum Wages and Employment," Foundations and Trends(R) in Microeconomics, now publishers, vol. 3(1–2), pages 1-182, March.
    7. Sara Lemos, 2007. "Minimum wage effects across the private and public sectors in Brazil," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(4), pages 700-720.
    8. Neumark, David & Cunningham, Wendy & Siga, Lucas, 2006. "The effects of the minimum wage in Brazil on the distribution of family incomes: 1996-2001," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 136-159, June.
    9. Nicola Branson, 2009. "Re-weighting the OHS and LFS National household Survey Data to create a consistent series over time: A Cross Entropy Estimation Approach," SALDRU Working Papers 38, Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit, University of Cape Town.
    10. Sparrow, G.N. & Ortmann, Gerald F. & Lyne, Michael C. & Darroch, Mark A.G., 2008. "Determinants of the demand for regular farm labour in South Africa, 1960-2002," Agrekon, Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA), vol. 47(1), March.
    11. Haroon Bhorat, 2000. "Are Wage Adjustments an Effective Mechanism for Poverty Alleviation?: Some Simulations for Domestic and Farm Workers," Working Papers 00041, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
    12. Stephen G. Donald & Kevin Lang, 2007. "Inference with Difference-in-Differences and Other Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 221-233, May.
    13. Gindling, T.H. & Terrell, Katherine, 2007. "The effects of multiple minimum wages throughout the labor market: The case of Costa Rica," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 485-511, June.
    14. Conradie, Beatrice, 2005. "Wages and wage elasticities for wine and table grapes in South Africa," Agrekon, Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA), vol. 44(1), March.
    15. Alaniz, Enrique & Gindling, T.H. & Terrell, Katherine, 2011. "The impact of minimum wages on wages, work and poverty in Nicaragua," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(S1), pages 45-59.
    16. Hill, Elaine L., 2012. "Unconventional Natural Gas Development and Infant Health: Evidence from Pennsylvania," Working Papers 128815, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
    17. David S. Lee, 1999. "Wage Inequality in the United States During the 1980s: Rising Dispersion or Falling Minimum Wage?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 977-1023.
    18. repec:pri:rpdevs:dinkelman_ranchhod_minwages_0710 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bhorat, Haroon & Cassim, Aalia & Hirsch, Alan, 2014. "Policy co-ordination and growth traps in a middle-income country setting: The case of South Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 155, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    2. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Benjamin Stanwix, 2017. "Minimum Wages in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Primer," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 32(1), pages 21-74.
    3. Belman, Dale. & Wolfson, Paul., 2016. "What does the minimum wage do in developing countries? : A review of studies and methodologies," ILO Working Papers 994893283402676, International Labour Organization.
    4. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Natasha Mayet, 2013. "The impact of sectoral minimum wage laws on employment, wages, and hours of work in South Africa," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 2(1), pages 1-27, December.
    5. Bhorat, Haroon & Naidoo, Karmen & Yu, Derek, 2014. "Trade unions in an emerging economy: The case of South Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 055, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    6. repec:spr:jlabre:v:38:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s12122-017-9241-z is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Bhorat, Haroon & Goga, Sumayya & Stanwix, Benjamin, 2014. "Skills-biased labour demand and the pursuit of inclusive growth in South Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 130, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    8. repec:eee:wdevel:v:102:y:2018:i:c:p:135-157 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Haroon Bhorat & Karmen Naidoo & Morné Oosthuizen & Kavisha Pillay, 2015. "Demographic, employment, and wage trends in South Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 141, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    10. Luis E. Arango & Luz A. Flórez, 2017. "Informalidad laboral y elementos para un salario mínimo diferencial por regiones en Colombia," Borradores de Economia 1023, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    11. Betcherman, Gordon, 2014. "Labor market regulations : what do we know about their impacts in developing countries ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6819, The World Bank.
    12. Haroon Bhorat, 2014. "Compliance with minimum wage laws in developing countries," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 1-80, August.
    13. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Benjamin Stanwix, 2015. "Partial minimum wage compliance," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-20, December.
    14. Haroon Bhorat & Kezia Lilenstein & Morné Oosthuizen & Amy Thornton, 2016. "Vulnerability In Employment: Evidence from South Africa," Working Papers 201604, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
    15. Haroon Bhorat & François Steenkamp & Christopher Rooney & Nomsa Kachingwe & Adrienne Lees, 2016. "Understanding and characterizing the services sector in South Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 157, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Minimum Wage; Agriculture; South Africa; Wage; Employment; Hours of Work;

    JEL classification:

    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J32 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Retirement Plans; Private Pensions
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy
    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
    • J43 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Agricultural Labor Markets

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ctw:wpaper:12149. 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: (Waseema Petersen). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/dpuctza.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.