IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

A Price for Flexibility? The Temp Agency Wage Gap in Sweden 1998-2008

  • Andersson Joona, Pernilla


    (SOFI, Stockholm University)

  • Wadensjö, Eskil


    (Stockholm University)

Temporary agency employment has grown rapidly in Sweden as in many other countries. The sector was deregulated in the early 1990s and there are now only few remaining restrictions. Even though there are collective agreements covering a large part of the workers in the sector, the unions are worried about low wages and poor working conditions in the sector. This paper analyzes the development of the temporary agency wage gap during the period 1998-2008 using Swedish register data. We find that from a nearly non-existent gap in 2001 and a positive wage gap for women, both male and female temp agency workers received between 16 and 18 percent lower wages in 2008. This development appears partly to be explained by a lower return to university education among temp agency workers than among those employed in other sectors.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6587.

in new window

Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: May 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6587
Contact details of provider: Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page:

Order Information: Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Chris Forde & Gary Slater, 2004. "Agency working in Britain: character, consequences and regulation," Working Papers 2004/4, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham Business School, Economics Division.
  2. Jahn, Elke J. & Pozzoli, Dario, 2011. "Does the Sector Experience Affect the Pay Gap for Temporary Agency Workers?," IZA Discussion Papers 5837, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Jahn, Elke J. & Bentzen, Jan, 2010. "What Drives the Demand for Temporary Agency Workers?," IZA Discussion Papers 5333, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Andersson, Pernilla & Wadensjö, Eskil, 2004. "Statistik om bemanningsbranschen. Presentation och jämförelser av två nya databaser," Working Paper Series 6/2004, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
  5. Ichino, Andrea & Mealli, Fabrizia & Nannicini, Tommaso, 2006. "From Temporary Help Jobs to Permanent Employment: What Can We Learn from Matching Estimators and their Sensitivity?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5736, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Susan N. Houseman & Arne L. Kalleberg & George A. Erickcek, 2003. "The Role of Temporary Agency Employment in Tight Labor Markets," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 57(1), pages 105-127, October.
  7. Fredrik Andersson & Harry J. Holzer & Julia Lane, 2007. "Temporary Help Agencies and the Advancement Prospects of Low Earners," NBER Working Papers 13434, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Leuven, Edwin & Oosterbeek, Hessel, 2011. "Overeducation and Mismatch in the Labor Market," IZA Discussion Papers 5523, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. David H. Autor, 2001. "Why Do Temporary Help Firms Provide Free General Skills Training?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1409-1448, November.
  10. Kvasnicka, Michael & Werwatz, Axel, 2002. "On the wages of temporary help service workers in Germany," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 2002,70, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  11. Michael Kvasnicka, 2008. "Does Temporary Help Work Provide a Stepping Stone to Regular Employment?," NBER Working Papers 13843, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Peter R. Mueser & Kenneth R. Troske & Carolyn J. Heinrich, 2007. "The Role of Temporary Help Employment in Low-wage Worker Advancement," Working Papers 0719, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
  13. Jahn, Elke J. & Rosholm, Michael, 2010. "Looking Beyond the Bridge: How Temporary Agency Employment Affects Labor Market Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 4973, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Miguel Malo & Fernando Muñoz-Bullón, 2008. "The Role of Temporary Help Agency Employment on Temp-to-Perm Transitions," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 29(2), pages 138-161, June.
  15. Marloes de Graaf-Zijl & Ernest E. Berkhout, 2007. "Temporary agency work and the business cycle," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 28(7), pages 539-556, November.
  16. Jahn, Elke J., 2008. "Reassessing the Wage Penalty for Temps in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 3663, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6587. 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: (Mark Fallak)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

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

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.