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Are real entry wages rigid over the business cycle? : Empirical evidence for Germany from 1977 to 2009

  • Stüber, Heiko

    ()

    (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany])

"So far little empirical evidence exists on how real wages of newly hired workers react to business cycle conditions. This paper aims at filling this gap for Germany by analyzing the cyclical behavior of real wages of newly hired workers while controlling for 'cyclical upgrading' and 'cyclical downgrading' in employee/employer matches over the cycle. The analysis is undertaken for the 1977 to 2009 period using administrative longitudinal matched employer-employee wage data. I find that an increase in the unemployment rate of one percentage point decreases the real wages of job entries within given firm-jobs by about 1.27 percent. In light of the magnitude of the entry-wage cyclicality it seems that introducing wage rigidity in the Mortensen- Pissarides model in order to amplify realistic volatility of unemployment is not supported by the data. Further I show that the procyclicality of the employment/ population ratio is identical to the procyclicality of real entry wages. This counters the view of many macroeconomists that wages are much less cyclical than employment and unemployment." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))

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Paper provided by Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany] in its series IAB Discussion Paper with number 201206.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 15 Mar 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iab:iabdpa:201206
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  1. Ch. Pissarides., 2011. "The Unemployment Volatility Puzzle: Is Wage Stickiness the Answer?," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 1.
  2. Carneiro, Anabela & Guimaraes, Paulo & Portugal, Pedro, 2009. "Real Wages and the Business Cycle: Accounting for Worker and Firm Heterogeneity," IZA Discussion Papers 4174, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Anabela Carneiro & Paulo Guimarães & Pedro Portugal, 2012. "Real Wages and the Business Cycle: Accounting for Worker, Firm, and Job Title Heterogeneity," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 133-52, April.
  4. Haefke, Christian & Sonntag, Marcus & van Rens, Thijs, 2008. "Wage Rigidity and Job Creation," IZA Discussion Papers 3714, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Mortensen, Dale & Pissarides, Christopher, 2011. "Job Creation and Job Destruction in the Theory of Unemployment," Economic Policy, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, vol. 1, pages 19 pages.
  6. Marcelo Veracierto, 2002. "On the cyclical behavior of employment, unemployment and labor force participation," Working Paper Series WP-02-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  7. Paul J. Devereux, 2004. "Cyclical Quality Adjustment in the Labor Market," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 600-615, January.
  8. Fitzenberger, Bernd & Osikominu, Aderonke & Völter, Robert, 2005. "Imputation rules to improve the education variable in the IAB employment subsample," FDZ Methodenreport 200503_en, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  9. Gartner, Hermann & Merkl, Christian & Rothe, Thomas, 2012. "Sclerosis and large volatilities: Two sides of the same coin," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(1), pages 106-109.
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  11. Büttner, Thomas & Jacobebbinghaus, Peter & Ludsteck, Johannes, 2009. "Occupational upgrading and the business cycle in West Germany," IAB Discussion Paper 200902, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  12. Melissa Bjelland & Bruce Fallick & John Haltiwanger & Erika McEntarfer, 2010. "Employer-to-Employer Flows in the United States: Estimates Using Linked Employer-Employee Data," Working Papers 10-26, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
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  14. Paul J. Devereux & Robert A. Hart, 2006. "Real Wage Cyclicality of Job Stayers, Within-Company Job Movers, and Between-Company Job Movers," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 60(1), pages 105-119, October.
  15. Robert E. Hall, 2005. "Employment Fluctuations with Equilibrium Wage Stickiness," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 50-65, March.
  16. Mark Gertler & Antonella Trigari, 2006. "Unemployment fluctuations with staggered Nash wage bargaining," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  17. Feng, Shuaizhang & Burkhauser, Richard V. & Butler, J.S., 2006. "Levels and Long-Term Trends in Earnings Inequality: Overcoming Current Population Survey Censoring Problems Using the GB2 Distribution," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 24, pages 57-62, January.
  18. Stüber, Heiko & Beissinger, Thomas, 2012. "Does downward nominal wage rigidity dampen wage increases?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(4), pages 870-887.
  19. 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 666-89, August.
  20. Pedro S. Martins & Gary Solon & Jonathan Thomas, 2010. "Measuring What Employers Really Do about Entry Wages over the Business Cycle," NBER Working Papers 15767, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Robert Shimer, 2005. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 25-49, March.
  22. Burkhauser, Richard V. & Butler, J. S. & Feng, Shuaizhang & Houtenville, Andrew J., 2004. "Long term trends in earnings inequality: what the CPS can tell us," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 295-299, February.
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