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Nominal wage rigidity in the EU countries before and after the Great Recession: evidence from the WDN surveys

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  • Eva Branten
  • Ana Lamo
  • Tairi Room

Abstract

This paper studies the recent trends in nominal wage rigidity in a large group of EU countries, using survey data. We analyse two forms of nominal wage rigidity: downward nominal wage rigidity (DNWR) and the lagged response of wages to shocks. The frequency of wage changes, which is an indicator of lagged wage setting, slowed down in the aftermath of the Great Recession. We assess the possible reasons for this, and show that it was at least partially caused by a combination of a decline in average wage growth and persistent DNWR. In countries where wage growth slowed down more after the Great Recession, the frequency of wage changes declined more steeply as well. Our data allows evaluating the prevalence of DNWR in diverse economic circumstances. Like earlier research on this topic, we find that DNWR tends to be strongly prevalent, even in periods of slow economic growth and low wage inflation. DNWR declines during severe recessions but even then wage setting does not become completely flexible as the proportion of observed wage cuts is still below the level that would correspond to a flexible regime.

Suggested Citation

  • Eva Branten & Ana Lamo & Tairi Room, 2018. "Nominal wage rigidity in the EU countries before and after the Great Recession: evidence from the WDN surveys," Bank of Estonia Working Papers wp2018-03, Bank of Estonia, revised 15 Jun 2018.
  • Handle: RePEc:eea:boewps:wp2018-03
    DOI: 10.23656/25045520/032018/0155
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    Cited by:

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    2. Daisuke Ida & Mitsuhiro Okano, 2023. "International heterogeneity of nominal wages and optimal monetary policy," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(2), pages 112-138, August.
    3. Consolo, Agostino & Koester, Gerrit & Nickel, Christiane & Porqueddu, Mario & Smets, Frank, 2021. "The need for an inflation buffer in the ECB’s price stability objective – the role of nominal rigidities and inflation differentials," Occasional Paper Series 279, European Central Bank.
    4. Tomohide Mineyama, 2024. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity and Determinacy of Equilibrium," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 56(1), pages 305-316, February.
    5. Wataru Hirata & Toshitaka Maruyama & Tomohide Mineyama, 2020. "Flattening of the Wage Phillips Curve and Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity: The Japanese Experience in the 2010s," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 20-E-4, Bank of Japan.
    6. Dr. Matthias Burgert & Philipp Pfeiffer & Werner Roeger, 2021. "Fiscal policy in a monetary union with downward nominal wage rigidity," Working Papers 2021-16, Swiss National Bank.
    7. Masso, Jaan & Meriküll, Jaanika & Vahter, Priit, 2022. "The role of firms in the gender wage gap," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 454-473.
    8. Tomohide Mineyama, 2023. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity and Inflation Dynamics during and after the Great Recession," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 55(5), pages 1213-1244, August.
    9. Ida, Daisuke, 2023. "Liquidity-constrained consumers and optimal monetary policy in a currency union," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 131(C).
    10. Cecion, Martina & Coenen, Günter & Gerke, Rafael & Le Bihan, Hervé & Motto, Roberto & Aguilar, Pablo & Ajevskis, Viktors & Giesen, Sebastian & Albertazzi, Ugo & Gilbert, Niels & Al-Haschimi, Alexander, 2021. "The ECB’s price stability framework: past experience, and current and future challenges," Occasional Paper Series 269, European Central Bank.
    11. Arnd Kölling, 2022. "Shortage of Skilled Labor, Unions and the Wage Premium: A Regression Analysis with Establishment Panel Data for Germany," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 43(2), pages 239-259, June.
    12. Byrne, David & Zekaite, Zivile, 2018. "Missing wage growth in the euro area: is the wage Philips curve non-linear?," Economic Letters 9/EL/18, Central Bank of Ireland.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    downward nominal wage rigidity; wage change frequency; survey;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology
    • D22 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis

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