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The Endogenous Determination of Minimum Wage

  • Epstein, Gil S.

    ()

    (Bar-Ilan University)

  • Nitzan, Shmuel

    ()

    (Bar-Ilan University)

In this paper we study the endogenous determination of minimum wage employing a political-economic game-theoretic approach. A major objective of the paper is to clarify the crucial role of the strength of the workers’ union and of political culture on the determination of the minimum wage. In general, the equilibrium minimum wage differs from that postulated in the literature. In our uncertain environment the optimal minimum wage from the workers’ union point of view is lower than the level that maximizes its objective function in a certain environment where there is no opposition to the proposed minimum wage. We establish that a political culture that assigns a positive weight to the public well being can give rise to a wage that equals or exceeds these levels.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 73.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Nov 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp73
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  1. Rama, Martin, 1997. " Imperfect Rent Dissipation with Unionized Labor," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 93(1-2), pages 55-75, October.
  2. Appelbaum, Elie & Katz, Eliakim, 1987. "Seeking Rents by Setting Rents: The Political Economy of Rent Seeking," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 97(387), pages 685-99, September.
  3. Bernheim, B Douglas & Whinston, Michael D, 1986. "Common Agency," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(4), pages 923-42, July.
  4. Grossman, Gene & Helpman, Elhanan, 1993. "Protection for Sale," CEPR Discussion Papers 827, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Saint-Paul, Gilles, 1998. "A framework for analyzing the political support for active labor market policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 151-165, February.
  6. Rama, Martin & Tabellim, Guido, 1998. "Lobbying by capital and labor over trade and labor market policies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(7), pages 1295-1316, July.
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521377003 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Rodrik, Dani, 1986. "Tariffs, subsidies, and welfare with endogenous policy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3-4), pages 285-299, November.
  9. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1993. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," Working Papers 694, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  10. Van Long, Ngo & Vousden, Neil, 1991. "Protectionist responses and declining industries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1-2), pages 87-103, February.
  11. Oren M. Levin-Waldman, 1998. "Exploring the Politics of the Minimum Wage," Macroeconomics 9805010, EconWPA.
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