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The Wage Curve

Listed author(s):
  • BLANCHFLOWER, D.
  • OSWALD, A.

This paper, which follows in an LSE tradition begun by Phillips and Sargan, examines the role of unemployment in shaping pay. In contrast to most of the literature, it 1) uses microeconometric data on individuals and workplaces 2) examines a variety of data sets as a check on the robustness of results, and 3) studies the effects of unemployment on the real wage level (not on the rate of change of pay or prices) . The paper finds evidence - on British and US data - of a wage curve. The curve has a negative gradient at low levels of unemployment, but becomes horizontal at relatively high levels of unemployment.

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Paper provided by London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics in its series Papers with number 340.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: 1989
Handle: RePEc:fth:lseple:340
Contact details of provider: Postal:
LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND POLITICAL SCIENCE, CENTER FOR LABOUR ECONOMICS, HOUGHTON STREET LONDON WC2A 2AE ENGLAND.

Phone: +44 (020) 7405 7686
Web page: http://www.lse.ac.uk/

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  1. Desai, Meghnad, 1973. "Growth cycles and inflation in a model of the class struggle," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 6(6), pages 527-545, December.
  2. L Christofides & A Oswald, 1991. "Real Wage Determination and Rent-Sharing in Collective Bargaining Agreements," CEP Discussion Papers dp0042, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
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  4. Louis N. Christofides & Andrew J. Oswald, 1989. "Real Wage Determinatioan in Collective BArgaining Agreements," NBER Working Papers 3188, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Beckerman, Wilfred & Jenkinson, Tim, 1986. "What Stopped the Inflation? Unemployment of Commodity Prices?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(381), pages 39-54, March.
  6. John H. Pencavel, 1984. "The Tradeoff Between Wages and Employment in Trade Union Objectives," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 99(2), pages 215-231.
  7. Mcconnell, S., 1988. "Strikes, Wages And Private Information," Papers 10, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Discussion Paper.
  8. Holmlund, B. & Skedinger, P., 1988. "Wage Bargaining And Wage Drift: Evidence From The Swedish Wood Industry," Papers 419, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  9. Wadhwani, Sushil B, 1985. "Wage Inflation in the United Kingdom," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 52(206), pages 195-207, May.
  10. W. Rayack, 1987. "Sources and Centers of Cyclical Movement in Real Wages: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 10(1), pages 3-21, October.
  11. Hoel, Michael & Nymoen, Ragnar, 1988. "Wage formation in norwegian manufacturing: An empirical application of a theoretical bargaining model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 977-997, April.
  12. Topel, Robert H, 1986. "Local Labor Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 111-143, June.
  13. Oswald, Andrew J, 1982. "The Microeconomic Theory of the Trade Union," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 92(367), pages 576-595, September.
  14. Rowlatt, Penelope A, 1987. "A Model of Wage Bargaining," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(4), pages 347-372, November.
  15. Hersoug, Tor & Kjaer, Knut N & Rodseth, Asbjorn, 1986. "Wages, Taxes and the Utility-Maximizing Trade Union: A Confrontationwith Norwegian Data," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(3), pages 403-423, November.
  16. Anderson, T.M. & Risager, O., 1988. "Wage Formation In Denmark," Papers 414, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  17. Carruth, Alan A & Oswald, Andrew J, 1985. "Miners' Wages in Post-war Britain: An Application of a Model of Trade Union Behaviour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 95(380), pages 1003-1020, December.
  18. Stephen T. Marston, 1985. "Two Views of the Geographic Distribution of Unemployment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(1), pages 57-79.
  19. David Card, 1988. "Unexpected Inflation, Real Wages, and Employment Determination in Union Contracts," NBER Working Papers 2768, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Blackaby, D H & Manning, D N, 1987. "Regional Earnings Revisited," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 55(2), pages 158-183, June.
  21. Christofides, Louis N & Swidinsky, Robert & Wilton, David A, 1980. "A Microeconometric Analysis of the Canadian Wage Determination Process," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 47(186), pages 165-178, May.
  22. Gilbert, C L, 1976. "The Original Phillips Curve Estimates," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 43(169), pages 51-57, February.
  23. Holmlund, B. & Skedinger, P., 1988. "Wage Bargaining And Wage Drift: Evidence From Swedish Wood Industry," Papers 1988g, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  24. Rod Cross, 2000. "Hysteresis and Emu," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(4), pages 367-379, November.
  25. Manning, Alan, 1990. "Imperfect Competition, Multiple Equilibria and Unemployment Policy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(400), pages 151-162, Supplemen.
  26. Freeman, Richard B, 1988. "Evaluating the European View that the United States Has No Unemployment Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(2), pages 294-299, May.
  27. Grubb, David B, 1986. "Topics in the OECD Phillips Curve," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(381), pages 55-79, March.
  28. Bils, Mark J, 1985. "Real Wages over the Business Cycle: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(4), pages 666-689, August.
  29. James D. Adams, 1985. "Permanent Differences in Unemployment and Permanent Wage Differentials," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(1), pages 29-56.
  30. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen, 1986. "Unemployment in Britain," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 53(210(S)), pages 121-169, Supplemen.
  31. Paldam, Martin, 1980. " The International Element in the Phillips Curve," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 82(2), pages 216-239.
  32. Farber, Henry S, 1978. "Individual Preferences and Union Wage Determination: The Case of the United Mine Workers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 923-942, October.
  33. Nash, John, 1953. "Two-Person Cooperative Games," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 21(1), pages 128-140, April.
  34. Holly, Sean & Smith, Peter, 1987. "A Two-Sector Analysis of the UK Labour Market," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(1), pages 79-102, February.
  35. McDonald, Ian M & Solow, Robert M, 1981. "Wage Bargaining and Employment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 896-908, December.
  36. Nickell, Stephen J, 1987. "Why Is Wage Inflation in Britain So High?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(1), pages 103-128, February.
  37. Nickell, Stephen & Wadhwani, Sushil, 1988. "Unions, wages and employment : Tests based on U.K. firm-level data," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 727-733, March.
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