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Do Firms Really Share Rents with Their Employees?

Author

Listed:
  • David Margolis

    () (CREST - Centre de Recherche en Économie et Statistique - ENSAI - Ecole Nationale de la Statistique et de l'Analyse de l'Information [Bruz] - X - École polytechnique - ENSAE ParisTech - École Nationale de la Statistique et de l'Administration Économique - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, IZA - Institute for the Study of Labor, TEAM - Théories et Applications en Microéconomie et Macroéconomie - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Kjell G. Salvanes

    (NHH - Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration, Department of Economics - Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration)

Abstract

We use matched firm-worker panel data from France and Norway to consider observationally equivalent alternatives to the hypothesis that firms share product market rents with their workers in the form of higher wages. After documenting the main stylized facts, we find that neither the main statistical explanations (group effect in residuals and measurement error) nor sectoral shocks seem to be responsible for the observed correlation. Statistical-economic explanations (endogeneity of profits, omitted variable biases in terms of individual productive characteristics) are slightly more successful, as instrumentation reduces the significance level in France to 89% (via an increase in the standard error of the estimate). The most complete model, with unobserved heterogeneity in both time-invariant firm compensation policy and time-invariant individual characteristics, instrumental variables and a complete set of controls for worker observables and sectoral shocks renders the coefficient insignificant for France and weakens its significance for Norway and the presence of a more mobile labor force in France, although it may also be due to insufficient degrees of freedom.

Suggested Citation

  • David Margolis & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2000. "Do Firms Really Share Rents with Their Employees?," Post-Print halshs-00367838, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:halshs-00367838
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00367838
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    Cited by:

    1. Pedro Martins, 2009. "Rent sharing before and after the wage bill," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(17), pages 2133-2151.
    2. Dobbelaere, Sabien & Mairesse, Jacques, 2018. "Comparing micro-evidence on rent sharing from two different econometric models," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 18-26.
    3. Philip Du Caju & François Rycx & Ilan Tojerow, 2011. "Inter‐Industry Wage Differentials: How Much Does Rent Sharing Matter?," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 79(4), pages 691-717, July.
    4. Alessia Matano & Paolo Naticchioni, 2017. "The Extent of Rent Sharing along the Wage Distribution," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 55(4), pages 751-777, December.
    5. Martins, Pedro S. & Esteves, Luiz A., 2006. "Is There Rent Sharing in Developing Countries? Matched-Panel Evidence from Brazil," IZA Discussion Papers 2317, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Kjell Erik Lommerud & Bjørn Sandvik & Odd Rune Straume, 2004. "Good Jobs, Bad Jobs and Redistribution," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(4), pages 703-720, December.
    7. Robert Plasman & François Rycx & Ilan Tojerow, 2006. "Industry wage differentials, unobserved ability, and rent-sharing : Evidence from matched worker-firm data, 1995-2002," Working Paper Research 90, National Bank of Belgium.
    8. Philip Du Caju & François Rycx & Ilan Tojerow, 2011. "Wage Structure Effects of International Trade: Evidence from a Small Open Economy," Working Papers CEB 11-011, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    9. Sabien Dobbelaere & Jacques Mairesse, 2010. "Comparing Micro-evidence on Rent Sharing from Three Different Approaches," NBER Working Papers 16220, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Gruetter, Max & Lalive, Rafael, 2009. "The importance of firms in wage determination," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 149-160, April.
    11. Chinhui Juhn & Kristin McCue & Holly Monti & Brooks Pierce, 2018. "Firm Performance and the Volatility of Worker Earnings," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(S1), pages 99-131.
    12. Nicole Guertzgen, 2009. "Rent‐sharing and Collective Bargaining Coverage: Evidence from Linked Employer–Employee Data," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 111(2), pages 323-349, June.
    13. Jäger, Simon & Schoefer, Benjamin & Young, Samuel & Zweimüller, Josef, 2018. "Wages and the Value of Nonemployment," IZA Discussion Papers 11996, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    14. Bell, Brian & Bukowski, Pawel & Machin, Stephen, 2018. "Rent Sharing and Inclusive Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 13408, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    15. Mahmood Arai & Fredrik Heyman, 2009. "Microdata evidence on rent-sharing," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(23), pages 2965-2976.
    16. Bernd Görzig & Martin Gornig & Axel Werwatz, 2004. "East Germany's Wage Gap: A Non-Parametric Decomposition Based on Establishment Characteristics," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 451, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    17. Guy Navon & Ilan Tojerow, 2013. "Does Rent-sharing Profit Female and Male Workers? Evidence from Israeli Matched Employer–Employee Data," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 27(3), pages 331-349, September.
    18. N. Guertzgen, 2010. "Rent-sharing and collective wage contracts-evidence from German establishment-level data," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(22), pages 2835-2854.
    19. Bernd Gorzig & Martin Gornig & Axel Werwatz, 2005. "Explaining Eastern Germany's Wage Gap: The Impact of Structural Change," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(4), pages 449-464.
    20. Ambra Poggi & Rosella Nicolini, 2016. "Labor Market Reform and Rent-sharing: A Quasi-experiment Experience," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 38(4), pages 618-631.
    21. Bernd Görzig & Martin Gornig & Axel Werwatz, 2006. "Firm Specific Wage Spread in Germany - Decomposition of regional differences in inter firm wage dispersion," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2006-045, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
    22. Arai, Mahmood & Heyman, Fredrik, 2001. "Wages, Profits and Individual Unemployment Risk : Evidence from Matched Worker-Firm Data," Working Paper Series 172, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.

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    Keywords

    Rent Wages Workers;

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