Labor Market Signaling with Overconfident Workers N.B.: This paper is replaced by Nr 11.07 "Labor Market Signaling and Self-Confidence: Wage Compression and the Gender Pay Gap" (December 2011)
I extend Spence's (1974) labor market signaling model by assuming some workers are overconfident and some underconfident. Overconfident (underconfident) workers underestimate (overestimate) their marginal cost of acquiring education. Firms cannot observe workers' productive abilities and cannot observe workers' beliefs. However, firms know the fraction of overconfident, underconfident, and high-ability workers in the economy. I find that the presence of overconfident and/or underconfident workers in the labor market compresses wages. I show that workers' biased beliefs reduce welfare when workers are sufficiently different in terms of productivity and cost of education. Finally, I show that if the fraction of overconfident workers is relatively low and workers are sufficiently similar in terms of productivity and cost of education, then biased beliefs improve welfare.
|Date of creation:||Jun 2010|
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References listed on IDEAS
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- Xavier Gabaix & David Laibson, 2006.
"Shrouded Attributes, Consumer Myopia, and Information Suppression in Competitive Markets,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 121(2), pages 505-540.
- Xavier Gabaix & David Laibson, 2005. "Shrouded Attributes, Consumer Myopia, and Information Suppression in Competitive Markets," NBER Working Papers 11755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Laibson, David I. & Gabaix, Xavier, 2006. "Shrouded Attributes, Consumer Myopia, and Information Suppression in Competitive Markets," Scholarly Articles 4554333, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Fang, Hanming & Moscarini, Giuseppe, 2005. "Morale hazard," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 749-777, May.
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- Hanming Fang & Giuseppe Moscarini, 2004. "Morale Hazard," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm386, Yale School of Management.
- Alvaro Sandroni & Francesco Squintani, 2007. "Overconfidence, Insurance, and Paternalism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1994-2004, December.
- Sandroni, Alvaro & Squintani, Francesco, 2007. "Overconfidence, Insurance and Paternalism," Economics Discussion Papers 8914, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
- Carl M. Campbell III & Kunal S. Kamlani, 1997. "The Reasons for Wage Rigidity: Evidence from a Survey of Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(3), pages 759-789.
- Lindquist, Matthew J., 2005. "The welfare costs of union wage compression," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 639-658, April. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
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