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The Impact of Sectoral Minimum Wage Laws on Employment, Wages and Hours of Work in South Africa

Author

Listed:
  • Haroon Bhorat
  • Ravi Kanbur
  • Natasha Mayet

    () (Development Policy Research Unit
    Director and Professor)

Abstract

This paper attempts to investigate the impact of sectoral wage laws in South Africa. Specifically, we examine the impact of minimum wage laws promulgated in the Retail, Domestic work, Forestry, Security, and Taxi sectors using 15 waves of biannual Labour Force Survey data for the 2000-2007 period. Using a quasi-experimental approach, we apply two alternative specifications of a difference-in-differences model to estimate the impact of multiple minimum wage laws in South Africa on employment, wages, and hours of work. In order to assess whether the changes experienced by workers in the sectors analysed were unique to those sectors, a unique control group is identified for each sector.We find some evidence of a significant increase in real hourly wages in the post-law period in four of the five sectors examined. Our results also suggest that whilst there was no significant impact of the laws at the extensive margin, there was some evidence of an adjustment at the intensive margin in certain sectors. We also find that in three of the five sectors, increases in real hourly wages were sufficient to outweigh intensive margin adjustments so that workers in these sectors experienced an improvement in real monthly income as a result of the law.

Suggested Citation

  • Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Natasha Mayet, 2012. "The Impact of Sectoral Minimum Wage Laws on Employment, Wages and Hours of Work in South Africa," Working Papers 12154, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
  • Handle: RePEc:ctw:wpaper:12154
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Haroon BHORAT & Ravi KANBUR & Natasha MAYET, 2012. "Minimum wage violation in South Africa," International Labour Review, International Labour Organization, vol. 151(3), pages 277-287, September.
    2. 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.
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    6. William Maloney & Jairo Mendez, 2004. "Measuring the Impact of Minimum Wages. Evidence from Latin America," NBER Chapters,in: Law and Employment: Lessons from Latin America and the Caribbean, pages 109-130 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Tom Hertz, 2005. "The Effect of Minimum Wages on the Employment and Earnings of South Africa’s Domestic Service Workers," Working Papers 05099, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
    8. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Natasha Mayet, 2012. "Estimating the Causal Effect of Enforcement on Minimum Wage Compliance: The Case of S outh A frica," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(4), pages 608-623, November.
    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. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Benjamin Stanwix, 2014. "Estimating the Impact of Minimum Wages on Employment, Wages, and Non-Wage Benefits: The Case of Agriculture in South Africa," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1402-1419.
    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.
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    Cited by:

    1. 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.
    2. Nur FERIYANTO & Jaka SRIYANA, 2016. "Labor Absorption Under Minimum Wage Policy In Indonesia," Regional Science Inquiry, Hellenic Association of Regional Scientists, vol. 0(1), pages 11-21, June.
    3. Rulof Burger & Rachel Jafta & Dieter von Fintel, 2016. "Affirmative action policies and the evolution of post-apartheid South Africa's racial wage gap," WIDER Working Paper Series 066, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    4. Selin Pelek, 2015. "The Employment Effect of the Minimum Wage: An Empirical Analysis From Turkey," Ekonomi-tek - International Economics Journal, Turkish Economic Association, vol. 4(1), pages 49-68, January.
    5. Piotr Lewandowski & Agnieszka Kaminska, 2015. "The effects of minimum wage on a labour market with high temporary employment," IBS Working Papers 7/2015, Instytut Badan Strukturalnych.
    6. T. H. Gindling, 2014. "Does increasing the minimum wage reduce poverty in developing countries?," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 1-30, May.
    7. Haroon Bhorat & Ravi Kanbur & Benjamin Stanwix, 2014. "Estimating the Impact of Minimum Wages on Employment, Wages, and Non-Wage Benefits: The Case of Agriculture in South Africa," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1402-1419.
    8. Dieter von Fintel, 2016. "Institutional wage-setting, labour demand and labour supply: causal estimates from a South African pseudo-panel," Working Papers 07/2016, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
    9. Patrick Belser & Uma Rani, 2015. "Minimum wages and inequality," Chapters,in: Labour Markets, Institutions and Inequality, chapter 5, pages 123-146 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    10. Haroon Bhorat & Tara Caetano & Benjamin Jourdan & Ravi Kanbur & Christopher Rooney & Benjamin Stanwix & Ingrid Woolard, 2016. "Investigating the Feasibility of a National Minimum Wage for South Africa," Working Papers 201601, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
    11. Haroon Bhorat & Karmen Naidoo & Derek Yu, 2014. "Trade Unions In An Emerging Economy: The Case Of South Africa," Working Papers 201402, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
    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. Maike Hohberg & Jann Lay, 2015. "The impact of minimum wages on informal and formal labor market outcomes: evidence from Indonesia," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-25, December.
    14. 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.
    15. repec:unu:wpaper:wp2014-006 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Sudip Ranjan Basu & Yusuke Tateno, "undated". "Minimum wage policies to boost inclusive growth," MPDD Policy Briefs PB16, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).
    17. David N. Margolis, 2014. "Introducing a statutory minimum wage in middle and low income countries," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 1-52, May.
    18. repec:eee:wdevel:v:102:y:2018:i:c:p:135-157 is not listed on IDEAS
    19. Loughrey, Jason & Donnellan, Trevor & Hanrahan, Kevin & Hennessy, Thia, 2013. "Agricultural Labour Market Flexibility in the EU and Candidate Countries," Working Papers 155707, Factor Markets, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    20. Jeroen Horemans, 2016. "The part-time poverty gap across Europe: How institutions affect the way part-time and full-time workers avoid poverty differently," Working Papers 1603, Herman Deleeck Centre for Social Policy, University of Antwerp.
    21. Soundararajan, Vidhya, 2014. "Minimum Wage Effects at Different Enforcement Levels: Evidence from Employment Surveys in India," Working Papers 180133, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.

    More about this item

    Keywords

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

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy

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