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Employment Protection Legislation and Wages

  • Leonardi, Marco

    ()

    (University of Milan)

  • Pica, Giovanni

    ()

    (University of Milan)

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.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2680.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2680
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  1. 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.
  2. Edward P. Lazear, 1990. "Job Security Provisions and Employment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(3), pages 699-726.
  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. Pedro S. Martins, 2008. "Dismissals for cause: The difference that just eight paragraphs can make," Working Papers 24, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Business and Management, Centre for Globalisation Research.
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  7. Andrea Borgarello & Pietro Garibaldi & Lia Pacelli, 2003. "Employment Protection Legislation and the Size of Firms," LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series 23, LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies.
  8. 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.
  9. William Kerr & Adriana Kugler & David Autor, 2007. "Do Employment Protections Reduce Productivity? Evidence from U.S. States," Working Papers 07-04, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  10. Federico Cingano & Marco Leonardi & Julian Messina & Giovanni Pica, 2009. "The Effect of Employment Protection Legislation and Financial Market Imperfections on Investment: Evidence from a Firm-Level Panel of EU countries," CSEF Working Papers 227, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  11. Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Job security, employment and wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 851-879, June.
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  13. repec:fth:prinin:433 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Tito Boeri & Juan F. Jimeno, 2003. "The Effects of Employment Protection: Learning from Variable Enforcement," Working Papers 252, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  15. 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.
  16. Adriana D. Kugler & Giovanni Pica, 2006. "The Effects of Employment Protection and Product Market Regulations on the Italian Labour Market," Chapters, in: Labour Market Adjustments in Europe, chapter 4 Edward Elgar Publishing.
  17. 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.
  18. Devicenti francesco & Maida Agata & Sestito Paolo, 2005. "Downward Wage Rigidity in Italy : Micro-based Measures and Implications," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 200503, University of Turin.
  19. Garibaldi, Pietro & Violante, Giovanni L, 2004. "The Employment Effects of Severance Payments with Wage Rigidities," CEPR Discussion Papers 4608, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  20. Adriana Kugler adkugler@uh.edu & Giovanni Pica, 2005. "The Effects of Employment Protection on the Italian Labour Market," CSEF Working Papers 135, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  21. van der Wiel, Karen, 2008. "Better Protected, Better Paid: Evidence on How Employment Protection Affects Wages," IZA Discussion Papers 3352, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  22. Adriana Kugler & Giovanni Pica, 2005. "Effects of Employment Protection on Worker and Job Flows: Evidence from the 1990 Italian Reform," NBER Working Papers 11658, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. 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.
  24. 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 201-09, January.
  25. 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.
  26. Christopher L. Erikson & Andrea Ichino, 1994. "Wage Differentials in Italy: Market Forces, Institutions, and Inflation," NBER Working Papers 4922, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. bertola, G. & Rogerson, R., 1996. "Institutions and Labor Reallocation," Papers 272, Banca Italia - Servizio di Studi.
  28. Samuel Bentolila & Giuseppe Bertola, 1990. "Firing Costs and Labour Demand: How Bad is Eurosclerosis?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 57(3), pages 381-402.
  29. Kugler, Adriana D. & Pica, Giovanni, 2004. "Effects of Employment Protection and Product Market Regulations on the Italian Labour Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 4216, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  30. 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.
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  33. Maia Guell, 2000. "Fixed-term Contracts and Unemployment: an Efficiency Wage Analysis," Working Papers 812, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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