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Granular Search, Market Structure, and Wages

Author

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  • Jarosch, Gregor

    (Princeton University)

  • Nimczik, Jan Sebastian

    (European School of Management and Technology (ESMT))

  • Sorkin, Isaac

    (Stanford University)

Abstract

We build a model where firm size is a source of labor market power. The key mechanism is that a granular employer can eliminate its own vacancies from a worker's outside option in the wage bargain. Hence, a granular employer does not compete with itself. We show how wages depend on employment concentration and then use the model to quantify the effects of granular market power. In Austrian micro-data, we find that granular market power depresses wages by about ten percent and can explain 40 percent of the observed decline in the labor share from 1997 to 2015. Mergers decrease competition for workers and reduce wages even at non-merging firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Jarosch, Gregor & Nimczik, Jan Sebastian & Sorkin, Isaac, 2019. "Granular Search, Market Structure, and Wages," IZA Discussion Papers 12574, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp12574
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    market power; labor share; search and matching;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J42 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Monopsony; Segmented Labor Markets

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