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Wage Bargaining, Union Membership, and the Organization of Unemployment Insurance

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Abstract

The paper offers a theoretical analysis of a labor market institution known as the Gent system, which is a system where unions run unemployment insurance (UI) through government-subsidized UI funds. This sytem is practiced in four Nordic countries with comparatively very high unionization rates. The analysis shows that the Gent system is more conducive to unionization than a compulsory UI system if the Gent system is heavily subsidized by the government or if workers are strongly risk averse. Moreover, a rise in the share of benefits financed by union members is likely to reduce wages as well as union membership.

Suggested Citation

  • Holmlund, Bertil & Lundborg, Per, 1996. "Wage Bargaining, Union Membership, and the Organization of Unemployment Insurance," Working Paper Series 1996:17, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:uunewp:1996_017
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kiander, Jaakko, 1993. "Endogenous unemployment insurance in a monopoly union model when job search matters," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 101-115, August.
    2. 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.
    3. Neumann, George & Pedersen, Peder J. & Westergard-Nielsen, Niels, 1991. "Long-run international trends in aggregate unionization," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 249-274, October.
    4. Naylor, Robin & Cripps, Martin, 1993. "An economic theory of the open shop trade union," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(8), pages 1599-1620, December.
    5. Holmlund, Bertil & Lundborg, Per, 1989. "Unemployment insurance schemes for reducing the natural rate of unemployment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 1-15, February.
    6. Booth, Alison L & Chatterji, Monojit, 1995. "Union Membership and Wage Bargaining When Membership is Not Compulsory," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(429), pages 345-360, March.
    7. Lockwood, Ben & Manning, Alan, 1993. "Wage setting and the tax system theory and evidence for the United Kingdom," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 1-29, August.
    8. Booth, Alison L & Chatterji, Monojit, 1993. "Reputation, Membership and Wages in Open Shop Trade Union," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 45(1), pages 23-41, January.
    9. 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.
    10. repec:cup:apsrev:v:83:y:1989:i:02:p:481-501_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Holmlund, Bertil & Lundborg, Per, 1988. " Unemployment Insurance and Union Wage Setting," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 90(2), pages 161-172.
    12. Calmfors, L. & Forslund, A., 1989. "Wage Setting In Sweden," Papers 430, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
    13. Jakobsson, Ulf, 1976. "On the measurement of the degree of progression," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1-2), pages 161-168.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marcus Dittrich, 2010. "Welfare Effects of Local versus Central Wage Bargaining," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 24(1), pages 26-34, March.
    2. Helge Sanner, 2003. "Self-financing Unemployment Insurance and Bargaining Structure," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 17(2), pages 229-246, June.
    3. Laszlo Goerke & Markus Pannenberg, 2007. "Trade Union Membership and Works Councils in West Germany," Industrielle Beziehungen - Zeitschrift fuer Arbeit, Organisation und Management - The German Journal of Industrial Relations, Rainer Hampp Verlag, vol. 14(2), pages 154-175.
    4. Halko, Marja-Liisa, 2003. "Buffer funding of unemployment insurance in a dynamic labour union model," Research Discussion Papers 24/2003, Bank of Finland.
    5. Goerke, Laszlo, 1998. "Bismarck versus Beveridge: Flat- and earnings-related unemployment insurance in an efficiency wage framework," Discussion Papers, Series I 291, University of Konstanz, Department of Economics.
    6. Sinko, Pekka, 2003. "Subsidizing vs. Experience Rating of Unemployment Insurance in Unionized Labor Markets," Discussion Papers 319, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    7. Daniele Checchi, 2000. "Time series evidence on union densities in European countries," Departmental Working Papers 2000-10, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
    8. Daniele Checchi & Claudio Lucifora, 2002. "Unions and labour market institutions in Europe," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 17(35), pages 361-408, October.
    9. Schnabel, Claus, 2012. "Union membership and density: Some (not so) stylized facts and challenges," Discussion Papers 81, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
    10. Goerke, Laszlo & Madsen, Jakob B., 2003. "Earnings-Related Unemployment Benefits in a Unionised Economy," IZA Discussion Papers 701, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    11. Laszlo Goerke & Markus Pannenberg, 2004. "Norm-Based Trade Union Membership: Evidence for Germany," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 5(4), pages 481-504, November.
    12. Petri Böckerman & Roope Uusitalo, 2005. "Union membership and the erosion of the Ghent system: Lessons from Finland," Labor and Demography 0508008, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Dittrich, Marcus, 2006. "Welfare Effects of Union Bargaining Centralisation in a Two-Sector Economy," MPRA Paper 11, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Sep 2006.
    14. repec:ora:journl:v:1:y:2016:i:1:p:340-350 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Alho, Kari O. E., 2006. "Labour Market Institutions and the Effectiveness of Tax and Benefit Policies in Enchancing Employment: A General Equilibrium Analysis," Discussion Papers 1008, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    16. Schnabel, Claus, 2002. "Determinants of trade union membership," Discussion Papers 15, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
    17. Lai, Ching-chong & Chang, Juin-jen & Chang, Wen-ya, 2001. "Currency devaluation in an open-shop union," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 61-74.
    18. Erling Barth & Karl O. Moene, 2009. "The Equality Multiplier," NBER Working Papers 15076, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Goerke, Laszlo & Madsen, Jakob B., 2003. "Earnings-related unemployment benefits and unemployment," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 41-62, March.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    wage bargaining; union membership; unemployment insurance;

    JEL classification:

    • J50 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - General
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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