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Paying for Others' Protection: Causal Evidence on Wages in a Two-Tier System

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  • Centeno, Mario

    (Banco de Portugal)

  • Novo, Alvaro A.

    (Banco de Portugal)

Abstract

In a segmented labor market, theory predicts that employment protection has an asymmetric impact on entry and incumbent wages. We explore a reform that increased the protection of open-ended contracts for a well-defined subset of firms, while leaving it unchanged for other firms. The causal evidence points to a reduction in wages for new open-ended and fixed-term contracts and no impact for more tenured workers. The reductions estimated for entrants oscillate between -0.9 and -0.5 p.p., covering a significant part of the expected increase in firing costs. Firms with larger shares of fixed-term contracts shifted the burden to these workers.

Suggested Citation

  • Centeno, Mario & Novo, Alvaro A., 2014. "Paying for Others' Protection: Causal Evidence on Wages in a Two-Tier System," IZA Discussion Papers 8702, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8702
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Bentolila, Samuel & Dolado, Juan J. & Jimeno, Juan F., 2019. "Dual Labour Markets Revisited," IZA Discussion Papers 12126, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Andini, Corrado, 2023. "Exchange-rate policy, institutions and wages: A macroeconomic quasi-experiment from Italy, 1997–2000," International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 175(C), pages 158-170.
    4. Gebauer Markus, 2023. "Job Protection — It is Good to be an Insider," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Sciendo & Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 13(1), pages 1-50, January.
    5. Andini, Corrado, 2014. "Fixed Exchange-Rate Policy and Real Wage Growth: Quasi-Experimental Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 8701, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Marta Silva & Luis Filipe Martins & Helena Lopes, 2015. "Asymmetric labour market reforms and wage growth with fixed-term contracts: does learning about match quality matter?," Working Papers Series 2 15-04, ISCTE-IUL, Business Research Unit (BRU-IUL).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    wages; two-tier systems; quasi-experiment; employment protection;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J32 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Retirement Plans; Private Pensions
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs

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