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Real Wage Cyclicality in Germany and the UK: New Results Using Panel Data

  • Peng, Fei

    ()

    (University of Birmingham)

  • Siebert, W. Stanley

    ()

    (University of Birmingham)

This paper compares the cyclical behaviour of male real wages in Germany and the UK using the German Socio-Economic Panel 1984-2002 and the British Household Panel Survey 1991-2004. We distinguish between job stayers (remaining in the same job), and within- and between-company job movers. Stayers are the large majority in both countries. Using changes in the unemployment rate as the cyclical measure, we find real wages of stayers in the private sector in West Germany – but not East Germany – to be procyclical, and quite sensitive to unemployment, comparable to the US and the UK. We find cyclicality in the public sector in neither country. Thus real wage flexibility is similar in the two countries, apart from East Germany, despite apparent differences in wage-setting institutions.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2688.

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Length: 16 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2688
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  1. Shin, Donggyun, 1994. "Cyclicality of real wages among young men," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 137-142, October.
  2. Paul J. Devereux & Robert A. Hart, 2005. "Real wage cyclicality of job stayers, within-company job movers, and between-company job movers," Open Access publications 10197/745, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  3. William T. Dickens & Lorenz Goette & Erica L. Groshen & Steinar Holden & Julian Messina & Mark E. Schweitzer & Jarkko Turunen & Melanie Ward, 2006. "How wages change: micro evidence from the International Wage Flexibility Project," Working Paper 0620, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  4. Ebbinghaus, Bernhard & Eichhorst, Werner, 2006. "Employment Regulation and Labor Market Policy in Germany, 1991-2005," IZA Discussion Papers 2505, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Paul J. Devereux, 2001. "The Cyclicality of Real Wages within Employer-Employee Matches," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 54(4), pages 835-850, July.
  6. Laurence Ball & David Romer, 1987. "Sticky Prices as Coordination Failure," NBER Working Papers 2327, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Gary Solon & Robert Barsky & Jonathan A. Parker, 1992. "Measuring the Cyclicality of Real Wages: How Important is Composition Bias," NBER Working Papers 4202, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Wolfgang Franz & Friedhelm Pfeiffer, 2006. "Reasons for Wage Rigidity in Germany," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 20(2), pages 255-284, 06.
  9. Donggyun Shin & Gary Solon, 2007. "New Evidence On Real Wage Cyclicality Within Employer-Employee Matches," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 54(5), pages 648-660, November.
  10. Holden Steinar & Wulfsberg Fredrik, 2008. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity in the OECD," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-50, April.
  11. Gary Solon & Warren Whatley & Ann Huff Stevens, 1997. "Wage Changes and Intrafirm Job Mobility over the Business Cycle: Two Case Studies," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 50(3), pages 402-415, April.
  12. Fei Peng & W. Stanley Siebert, 2008. "Real Wage Cyclicality in Italy," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 22(4), pages 569-591, December.
  13. Steinar Holden & Fredrik Wulfsberg, 2004. "Downward Nominal Wage Rigidity in Europe," Working Paper 2004/5, Norges Bank.
  14. Wolfgang Ochel, 2005. "Decentralizing Wage Bargaining in Germany - A Way to Increase Employment?," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 19(1), pages 91-121, 03.
  15. Virginia Doellgast & Ian Greer, 2007. "Vertical Disintegration and the Disorganization of German Industrial Relations-super-1," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 45(1), pages 55-76, 03.
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