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Wages and the bargaining regime under multi-level bargaining: Belgium, Denmark and Spain

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  • Robert Plasman
  • Michael Rusinek
  • François Rycx

Abstract

Using a unique harmonized matched employer-employee dataset (European Structure of Earnings Survey, 1995), we study the impact of the regime of collective bargaining on wages in the manufacturing sector of three countries that are characterized by a multilevel system of bargaining: Belgium, Denmark and Spain. Our findings show that, compared to multi-employer bargaining, single-employer bargaining has a positive effect both on wage levels and on wage dispersion in Belgium and in Denmark. In Spain, single-employer bargaining also increases wage levels but reduces wage dispersion. Our interpretation is that in Belgium and Denmark, single-employer bargaining is used to adapt pay to the specific needs of the firm while, in Spain, it is mainly used by trade unions in order to compress the wage distribution.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert Plasman & Michael Rusinek & François Rycx, 2006. "Wages and the bargaining regime under multi-level bargaining: Belgium, Denmark and Spain," DULBEA Working Papers 06-01.RS., ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  • Handle: RePEc:dul:wpaper:06-01rs
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Collective bargaining; wage structure.;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J51 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Trade Unions: Objectives, Structure, and Effects
    • J52 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Dispute Resolution: Strikes, Arbitration, and Mediation

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