IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/iza/izadps/dp2680.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Employment Protection Legislation and Wages

Author

Listed:
  • Leonardi, Marco

    (University of Milan)

  • Pica, Giovanni

    (USI Università della Svizzera Italiana)

Abstract

In a perfect labor market severance payments can have no real effects as they can be undone by a properly designed labor contract (Lazear 1990). We give empirical content to this proposition by estimating the effects of EPL on entry wages and on the tenure-wage profile in a quasi-experimental setting. We consider a reform that introduced unjust-dismissal costs in Italy for firms below 15 employees, leaving firing costs unchanged for bigger firms. Estimates which account for the endogeneity of the treatment status due to workers and firms sorting around the 15 employees threshold show no effect of the reform on entry wages and a decrease of the returns to tenure by around 20% in the first year and by 8% over the first two years. We interpret these findings as broadly consistent with Lazear’s (1990) prediction that firms make workers prepay the severance cost.

Suggested Citation

  • Leonardi, Marco & Pica, Giovanni, 2007. "Employment Protection Legislation and Wages," IZA Discussion Papers 2680, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2680
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://docs.iza.org/dp2680.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Job security, employment and wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 851-879, June.
    2. Bertola, Giuseppe & Rogerson, Richard, 1997. "Institutions and labor reallocation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(6), pages 1147-1171, June.
    3. Giuseppe Nicoletti & Stefano Scarpetta & Olivier Boylaud, 2000. "Summary Indicators of Product Market Regulation with an Extension to Employment Protection Legislation," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 226, OECD Publishing.
    4. Jacobson, Louis S & LaLonde, Robert J & Sullivan, Daniel G, 1993. "Earnings Losses of Displaced Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 685-709, September.
    5. David H. Autor & William R. Kerr & Adriana D. Kugler, 2007. "Do Employment Protections Reduce Productivity? Evidence from U.S. States," NBER Working Papers 12860, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Maia Guell, 2000. "Fixed-term Contracts and Unemployment: an Efficiency Wage Analysis," Working Papers 812, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    7. Luigi Guiso & Luigi Pistaferri & Fabiano Schivardi, 2005. "Insurance within the Firm," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(5), pages 1054-1087, October.
    8. Schivardi, Fabiano & Torrini, Roberto, 2004. "Threshold effects and firm size: the case of firing costs," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19956, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    9. Edward P. Lazear, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726.
    10. Francesco Devicienti & Agata Maida & Paolo Sestito, 2007. "Downward Wage Rigidity in Italy: Micro-Based Measures and Implications," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(524), pages 530-552, November.
    11. Pietro Garibaldi & Lia Pacelli & Andrea Borgarello, 2004. "Employment Protection Legislation and the Size of Firms," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 63(1), pages 33-68, April.
    12. Guell, Maia, 2000. "Fixed-term contracts and unemployment: an efficiency wage analysis," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20181, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    13. Maia Guell, 2000. "Fixed-term Contracts and Unemployment: an Efficiency Wage Analysis," Working Papers 812, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    14. Battistin, Erich & Rettore, Enrico, 2008. "Ineligibles and eligible non-participants as a double comparison group in regression-discontinuity designs," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 715-730, February.
    15. Adriana D. Kugler & Gilles Saint-Paul, 2004. "How Do Firing Costs Affect Worker Flows in a World with Adverse Selection?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(3), pages 553-584, July.
    16. David H. Autor, 2003. "Outsourcing at Will: The Contribution of Unjust Dismissal Doctrine to the Growth of Employment Outsourcing," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 1-42, January.
    17. David H. Autor & John J. Donohue & Stewart J. Schwab, 2006. "The Costs of Wrongful-Discharge Laws," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(2), pages 211-231, May.
    18. Pietro Garibaldi & Giovanni L. Violante, 2005. "The Employment Effects of Severance Payments with Wage Rigidities," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(506), pages 799-832, October.
    19. Christopher Erickson & Andrea Ichino, 1995. "Wage Differentials in Italy: Market Forces, Institutions, and Inflation," NBER Chapters, in: Differences and Changes in Wage Structures, pages 265-306, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. David H. Autor & John J. Donohue & Stewart J. Schwab, 2004. "The Employment Consequences of Wrongful-Discharge Laws: Large, Small, or None at All?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 440-446, May.
    21. Richard B. Freeman & Lawrence F. Katz, 1995. "Differences and Changes in Wage Structures," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number free95-1.
    22. Hahn, Jinyong & Todd, Petra & Van der Klaauw, Wilbert, 2001. "Identification and Estimation of Treatment Effects with a Regression-Discontinuity Design," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(1), pages 201-209, January.
    23. Belzil, Christian, 2000. "Job Creation and Job Destruction, Worker Reallocation, and Wages," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 183-203, April.
    24. repec:fth:prinin:433 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Prifti, Ervin & Vuri, Daniela, 2013. "Employment protection and fertility: Evidence from the 1990 Italian reform," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(C), pages 77-88.
    2. Christopher A. Hartwell, 2010. "Employment Protection Legislation and Labor Markets in Transition: Assessing the Effects of the Labor Code in Armenia," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 7(2), pages 413-445, December.
    3. Bassanini, Andrea & Garnero, Andrea, 2013. "Dismissal protection and worker flows in OECD countries: Evidence from cross-country/cross-industry data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 25-41.
    4. Federico Cingano & Marco Leonardi & Julián Messina & Giovanni Pica, 2010. "The effects of employment protection legislation and financial market imperfections on investment: evidence from a firm-level panel of EU countries [Technology and labour regulations]," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 25(61), pages 117-163.
    5. Lorenzo Cappellari & Carlo Dell’Aringa & Marco Leonardi, 2012. "Temporary Employment, Job Flows and Productivity: A Tale of Two Reforms," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(562), pages 188-215, August.
    6. Bertola, Giuseppe & Dabusinskas, Aurelijus & Hoeberichts, Marco & Izquierdo, Mario & Kwapil, Claudia & Montornès, Jeremi & Radowski, Daniel, 2012. "Price, wage and employment response to shocks: evidence from the WDN survey," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 783-791.
    7. Pedro S. Martins, 2009. "Dismissals for Cause: The Difference That Just Eight Paragraphs Can Make," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(2), pages 257-279, April.
    8. Cervini-Plá, María & Ramos, Xavier & Ignacio Silva, José, 2014. "Wage effects of non-wage labour costs," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 113-137.
    9. Andrea Bassanini & Luca Nunziata & Danielle Venn, 2009. "Job protection legislation and productivity growth in OECD countries [Appropriate growth policy: a unifying framework]," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 24(58), pages 349-402.
    10. David McKenzie, 2010. "Impact Assessments in Finance and Private Sector Development: What Have We Learned and What Should We Learn?," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 25(2), pages 209-233, August.
    11. Anders Bornhäll & Sven-Olov Daunfeldt & Niklas Rudholm, 2017. "Employment protection legislation and firm growth: evidence from a natural experiment," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 26(1), pages 169-185.
    12. Per Skedinger, 2010. "Employment Protection Legislation," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 13686.
    13. Leonor Modesto, 2008. "Unions, Firing Costs, and Unemployment," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 22(3), pages 509-546, September.
    14. van der Wiel, Karen, 2010. "Better protected, better paid: Evidence on how employment protection affects wages," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 16-26, January.
    15. Andrea Bassanini, 2012. "Aggregate Earnings and Macroeconomic Shocks: the Role of Labour Market Policies and Institutions," Review of Economics and Institutions, Università di Perugia, vol. 3(3).
    16. Román, Concepción & Congregado, Emilio & Millán, José María, 2013. "Start-up incentives: Entrepreneurship policy or active labour market programme?," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 151-175.
    17. Dewit, Gerda & Leahy, Dermot & Montagna, Catia, 2012. "Employment Protection, Flexibility and Firms’ Strategic Location Decisions under Uncertainty," SIRE Discussion Papers 2012-24, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
    18. Petar Stankov, 2018. "Deregulation, Economic Growth and Growth Acceleration," Journal of Economic Development, Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 43(4), pages 21-40, December.
    19. Luca Nunziata, 2012. "In a Time of Crisis: Some Notes on the Italian Labour Market and Beyond," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 10(2), pages 40-48, 08.
    20. Grassi, Emanuele, 2009. "EPL and Job Contract Conversion Rate: The Italian CFL Case," MPRA Paper 12679, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    21. Manas Ranjan Tripathy & Tavleen Kaur, 2012. "Perceptions of Employees on Information Checks by Employers using Social Networking Sites in IT Sector," Management and Labour Studies, XLRI Jamshedpur, School of Business Management & Human Resources, vol. 37(4), pages 345-358, November.
    22. Helmut Hofer, 2007. "The Severance Pay Reform in Austria ("Abfertigung neu")," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 5(4), pages 41-48, 06.
    23. Gerda Dewit & Dermot Leahy & Catia Montagna, 2013. "Employment Protection, Flexibility and Firms' Strategic Location Decisions under Uncertainty," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 80(319), pages 441-474, July.
    24. Rikke Ibsen & Elisabetta Trevisan & Niels Westergaard-Nielsen, 2008. "Job Mobility and Skill Transferability. Some Evidences from Denmark and a Large Italian Region," Working Papers 2008_40, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
    25. repec:ces:ifodic:v:5:y:2007:i:4:p:14567303 is not listed on IDEAS

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Marco Leonardi & Giovanni Pica, 2013. "Who Pays for it? The Heterogeneous Wage Effects of Employment Protection Legislation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 123(12), pages 1236-1278, December.
    2. Kugler, Adriana & Pica, Giovanni, 2008. "Effects of employment protection on worker and job flows: Evidence from the 1990 Italian reform," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 78-95, February.
    3. Federico Cingano & Marco Leonardi & Julián Messina & Giovanni Pica, 2016. "Employment Protection Legislation, Capital Investment and Access to Credit: Evidence from Italy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 126(595), pages 1798-1822, September.
    4. Pedro S. Martins, 2009. "Dismissals for Cause: The Difference That Just Eight Paragraphs Can Make," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(2), pages 257-279, April.
    5. von Below, David & Thoursie, Peter Skogman, 2010. "Last in, first out?: Estimating the effect of seniority rules in Sweden," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 987-997, December.
    6. Adriana D. Kugler & Giovanni Pica, 2006. "The Effects of Employment Protection and Product Market Regulations on the Italian Labour Market," Chapters, in: Julián Messina & Claudio Michelacci & Jarkko Turunen & Gylfi Zoega (ed.), Labour Market Adjustments in Europe, chapter 4, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    7. Andrea Vindigni & Simone Scotti & Cristina Tealdi, 2015. "Uncertainty and the Politics of Employment Protection," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(1), pages 209-267.
    8. Schivardi, Fabiano & Torrini, Roberto, 2008. "Identifying the effects of firing restrictions through size-contingent differences in regulation," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 482-511, June.
    9. MacLeod, W. Bentley & Nakavachara, Voraprapa, 2006. "Legal Default Rules: The Case of Wrongful Discharge Laws," IZA Discussion Papers 1970, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Kugler, Adriana & Pica, Giovanni, 2003. "The effects of employment protection and product market regulations on the Italian labor market," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0310, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    11. Diego Daruich & Sabrina Di Addario & Raffaele Saggio, 2020. "The Effects of Partial Employment Protection Reforms: Evidence from Italy," Development Working Papers 463, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 27 Apr 2020.
    12. van der Wiel, Karen, 2010. "Better protected, better paid: Evidence on how employment protection affects wages," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 16-26, January.
    13. Winfried Koeniger & Julien Prat, 2007. "Employment Protection, Product Market Regulation and Firm Selection," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(521), pages 302-332, June.
    14. Amine Samir, 2015. "Reflections On Employment Protection Legislation: An International Comparison," Comparative Economic Research, Sciendo, vol. 18(1), pages 119-130, March.
    15. Tito Boeri & Jan van Ours, 2013. "The Economics of Imperfect Labor Markets: Second Edition," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 10142.
    16. Dennis Wesselbaum, 2014. "Firing tax vs severance payments – an unequal comparison," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 41(5), pages 721-736, September.
    17. Ahrens, Steffen & Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2009. "On the introduction of firing costs," Kiel Working Papers 1559, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW Kiel).
    18. Guiso, Luigi & Pistaferri, Luigi & Schivardi, Fabiano, 2006. "Labour Adjustment: Disentangling Firing and Mobility Costs," CEPR Discussion Papers 5787, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    19. Alonso-Borrego, César & Fernández-Villaverde, Jesús & Galdon-Sanchez, Jose Enrique, 2004. "Evaluating Labor Market Reforms: A General Equilibrium Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 1129, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    20. Armin Falk & David Huffman & W. Bentley Macleod, 2015. "Institutions and Contract Enforcement," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(3), pages 571-590.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    costs of unjust dismissals; severance payments; regression discontinuity design;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2680. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/izaaade.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Holger Hinte (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/izaaade.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.